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On top of the game – Absa preparing future financial advisers

09 February 2012 Absa

On top of the game – Absa preparing future financial advisers Following the successful launch of Absa Insurance and Financial Advisers Academy in 2010 and the graduation of recruits in 2011, Absa recently announced the second intake of trainee advise

“With a shortage of professional financial advisers in the industry, we established an Adviser Academy to provide a continuous stream of qualified advisers mostly for Absa but also for the industry,” says Izak Smit, managing executive at Absa Financial Services Distribution. “This initiative is not only about skilling the people; it is also about creating employment opportunities as we endeavour to integrate trainees in jobs within Absa upon completion of the programme.”

He adds: “The first group of trainee advisers who have recently completed the programme have been place in different positions within Absa Insurance and Financial Advisory services. This will complement our existing financial advisers who are able to provide informed financial service advice therefore helping to promote the much-needed saving and investment culture in our country.”

In today’s increasingly competitive businesses environment, organisations often compete through the knowledge of their people – frequently referred to as valuable assets. As a result, skills development has become a key focus for businesses operating in South Africa and globally.

Jaco van Greunen, one of the graduates placed in a permanent position as an adviser in one of the branches had this to say about the programme: “It has been quite an experience. It has been especially helpful when one enters the workplace. The programme was a real stepping stone and the training has enabled me to really engage with clients and to offer them the best advice and the best service”.

In its third year of existence, the academy is welcoming 30 more new recruits for the February 2012 intake. During the year the new recruits will get an opportunity to learn and grow skills as competent financial advisers.

“This academy gives us an opportunity to grow our own talent from the grassroots and consequently meeting the challenge of scarce and critical skills required in the financial services industry,” asserts Smit.

Through the programme, carefully selected delegates will develop broader financial advisory skills and create a deeper awareness and understanding of the key value drivers of Insurance and Financial Services Advisory business.

“Across the group, our people are critical to the sustainability of our business. How well we equip them will determine our short and long-term success as a business. We are committed to developing and growing our people,” said Smit.

Another graduate, Marc Cusson said: “This has helped me grow as a person and enabled me to relate better to people. It really has done wonders for my confidence. I really want to extend a word of thanks to Absa for making this possible.”

“At Absa we undertake all our initiatives with the customer in mind. The role of financial advisers can never be over-emphasised and we have has adopted a customer-focused approach to continue to give excellent customer experience and this initiative will go a long way in facilitating,” concludes Smit.

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