The FPA has developed a new SOA video toolkit to guide members.
The Financial Planning Association of Australia (FPA) on Friday issued a new video toolkit titled the Statement of Advice Project (SOAP), with the aim to guide members to efficiently serve clients while complying with necessary regulations. The SOAP box set is a series of 14 videos designed to arm financial planners with the tools required to create a Statement of Advice (SOA) through video format.
The SOAP box set covers topics such as the real-life examples of video SOAs addressing various scenarios, for example, pre-retirement planning or life risk advice, as well as how advisers can create their own SOAs with ease. The FPA conducted extensive consultations with members, consumers, regulators, lawyers, compliance experts and technology providers to develop the SOAP box set, creating a paperless SOA aimed at increasing efficiency, decreasing compliance costs and delivering advice to clients that is easier to understand. Leading the discussions in the series are FPA’s head of policy, strategy and innovation, Ben Marshan, and founder of The Cyber Collective Australia, Fraser Jack. Sarah Abood, FPA chief executive, commented on the amount of work that goes into developing SOAs: “A lot of what drives up the cost of financial advice is the amount of background work, information investigation and time spent by the financial planner on what is required to be included in the SOA.” Ms Abood explained that SOAs can end up “clouding the actual advice” given to clients. Moreover, she labelled any efforts made towards making advice more efficient and usable by clients “a critical step forward for the profession”. “Through the SOAP Box Set, Ben and Fraser have put in an incredible amount of work towards making this a reality, and speaks to their tireless passion in making advice more accessible and affordable for clients,” Ms Abood said. Also commenting on the development, Mr Marshan said he hoped that the SOAP box set will showcase alternative avenues of developing SOAs that comply with current legislations. “We are still seeing financial planners put together paper-based SOAs that stretch between 80 to 100 pages long,” Mr Marshan said.
“The idea behind the Statement of Advice Project is to push the boundaries of finding the most effective way of providing advice to clients while also keeping within ASIC’s regulations.”
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