Quality Service Mark Proposed For Financial Advisers


A quality service mark for financial advisers is proposed by Financial Advice NZ which is now seeking feedback on the criteria and design for its ‘Trusted Adviser‘ accreditation.

“This mark, once finalised and approved, will be available for qualifying members to use in the promotion of themselves to the public,” says the orgnisation’s CEO Katrina Shanks.

“It is a visible symbol that an adviser’s high level of qualification, experience and ethics has been recognised by a professional body. The name Trusted Adviser Financial Advice New Zealand was selected as ‘trust’ is representative of the core of financial advice.”

Shanks says the Trusted Adviser mark will be easy to understand by the public and will  encourage them to seek out quality financial advice.

It creates a pathway to a recognised mark for those who are seeking to further develop their professional skills…

“The mark highlights those advisers who have chosen to commit to qualifications and continuing professional development obligations at a level higher than that required by New Zealand law and code,” says Shanks.

Katrina Shanks, CEO, Financial Advice NZ.
Katrina Shanks, CEO, Financial Advice NZ.

“The mark is intended as an aspirational mark that (FANZ) members will desire to achieve. It is not a new standard for membership nor is the criteria compulsory.

“It creates a pathway to a recognised mark for those who are seeking to further develop their professional skills and knowledge, and allows those that have met the criteria to differentiate themselves from other market participants.”

Proposed criteria

A Trusted Adviser of Financial Advice NZ is a member who has been accepted as having:

  • A level 5 qualification in financial services, including the relevant strands for the advice areas provided, or a higher qualification recognised by Financial Advice NZ
  • A minimum of three years’ experience as a financial adviser providing regulated financial advice
  • Maintained an annual professional development plan and attained a minimum of 20 hours’ structured continuing professional development every year
  • Attended a Financial Advice NZ Ethics in Financial Services three-hour workshop every three years
  • Appropriate adviser level professional indemnity insurance to provide assurance to clients
  • If 80% of a firm’s advisers are deemed “Trusted Advisers” then the firm can obtain the mark for itself

Shanks says that Authorised Financial Advisers and those with a CLU or CFP mark will be deemed to meet the criteria at launch date.

“However, ongoing compliance to maintain the mark is the same as all other members,” she says.

“Whether a member who doesn’t have a qualification, but does have a significant number of years’ experience, should be deemed to have met the qualification standard is one of the areas we are consulting on.”

Financial Advice NZ is holding a webinar on 8 July to discuss the Trusted Adviser proposal and consultation is open until 22 July.

To take part in the webinar register here.