What Consumer Duty means to me: A Q and A with Leah Wilkins

Leah Wilkins 1200X672
For financial professionals only

As businesses continue to embed Consumer Duty into their everyday working lives, we’re asking people across Parmenion how they think the new regulation is changing the financial services sector. Next up is Leah Wilkins, our Head of Client Services Intermediary.

Leah’s been involved right from the start, making sure we keep our customers at the centre of every decision we make.

1. What team do you work in?

I head up our Client Services team here at Parmenion.  We’re a small but mighty team providing top notch service to the advisers, paraplanners and clients that contact us via phone, live chat, email, or web form submissions.

2. How are you applying the new regulation to your work?

One of the 4 outcomes of Consumer Duty is good consumer understanding, and this is something that our team focus on.

It’s really important to us that when customers contact us, they know that they’ll be speaking to someone who’ll help them by communicating clearly and without using any jargon.

We’re also very aware that some customers may have vulnerabilities and need additional support, so we’ve added further training for our consultants to better understand how to support customers who need additional help.

We’ve also introduced more training sessions to offer more guidance for staff including:

  • How to communicate clearly
  • How to identify vulnerabilities, and
  • How best to support vulnerable customers

3. How has Consumer Duty changed your approach to working in Client Services?

I don’t think we’ve changed our approach – customer understanding and good service has always been our driver. We want to make sure we’re answering the question we’ve been asked as clearly and efficiently as possible. For us, I think it’s just making sure we have the customer at the heart of what we do and approaching things from their point of view.

4. How do you think Consumer Duty will help advisers or customers?

I think it’s all about understanding for both professionals and customers.

Consumer Duty is asking advisers to think about the conversations they’re having with their clients and whether the understanding is there so they can deliver what the client needs and expects from their finances.

This will help clients because, with greater clarity, they’ll be armed to make informed decisions.

5. What does Consumer Duty mean to you?

For me, it means doing the right thing for the customer. We need to put them at the heart of what we do by making things clearer, easier and simpler to understand, with trained staff to help support them each step of the way.

This article is for financial professionals only. Any information contained within is of a general nature and should not be construed as a form of personal recommendation or financial advice. Nor is the information to be considered an offer or solicitation to deal in any financial instrument or to engage in any investment service or activity.

Parmenion accepts no duty of care or liability for loss arising from any person acting, or refraining from acting, as a result of any information contained within this article. All investment carries risk. The value of investments, and the income from them, can go down as well as up and investors may get back less than they put in. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future returns.  

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