AUTHORISATION IS ONLY THE START OF THE JOURNEY FOR CONSUMER CREDIT FIRMSPublished 28-Jan-2016
GUEST BLOG: WHO WANTS TO BE A NON-EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR IN A FINANCIAL SERVICES FIRM?Published 28-Jan-2016
THE FIRST UK DEFERRED PROSECUTION AGREEMENT – WHAT CAN WE LEARN?Published 19-Jan-2016
A HOT POTATO: RESPONSIBILITY IN DELEGATED AUTHORITYPublished 12-Jan-2016
LEADERSHIP AND CULTUREPublished 17-Dec-2015
The Advisory Services team specialises in retail conduct risk: how firms are structured, how they operate,
the products they develop and how they are sold. We help firms to be focussed on quality of customer
outcome as required by the Financial Conduct Authority. Our regulatory consultants work in tandem with our
learning and development experts to approach your conduct risk issues from regulatory, employee
training and customer insight perspectives.
Our consultants – regulatory and training experts – come together to form a powerful team of senior experts. When you meet our
experts to understand how we can help, rest assured that those same experts will be working with you when you engage us. We
take the time to understand your goals, get to know your people and provide a truly specific way of achieving those goals for
We have experienced supervisors from the regulator, senior managers from major regulated firms and training experts who have
supported everyone from graduates to leaders in firms across regulated industries. Our consultants do not simply tell you what
is wrong; we engage with your staff to build and implement our recommendations which results in real change.
Darren Fisher - Director of Advisory Services
Darren has over 21 years’ regulatory experience in retail financial services. His background combines ‘big 4’ consultancies with retail banking and insurance markets, with a specific focus on conduct risk issues, assurance and projects which include complaint handling governance, outcomes testing and compliance monitoring.
Darren joined Huntswood from Deloitte where he was a Senior Manager in their financial services advisory practice. During his time at Deloitte he project managed and conducted a variety of engagements including senior manager conduct risk assurance & oversight, suitability back book reviews & action planning, along with complaint handling governance & standards, including MI & root cause analysis development, implementation and compliance effectiveness reviews.
His background of successfully managing and implementing Group-wide regulatory projects reflect his key strengths of building and maintaining key relationships and delivering, in collaboration with his clients, solutions to complex regulatory challenges.
Prior to joining Deloitte, Darren was a Senior Compliance Manager for a major outsourcer, responsible for the provision of regulatory advice to senior executives. Darren was also responsible for the development of the firm’s compliance monitoring framework and production of the compliance annual plan. He also supported the development of the firm’s TCF program and implementation of TCF MI.
Darren’s other industry experience includes being a Compliance Manager for the world’s largest building society where he was responsible for identifying and reporting regulatory change arising from UK and European governing bodies thereby enabling the Group to prepare for forthcoming change. This was complimented by his previous role as Senior Compliance Consultant, responsible for compliance sign off of product development and marketing initiatives including financial promotions, sales processes and call scripts. Prior to this, he held the position of Operational Risk Manager responsible for the implementation and management of operational risk frameworks, construction and ongoing review of KPIs.
Darren is fully FPC, CeFA and CeMAP qualified.
Andrew has over 20 years' experience working within financial services. This includes working both as a tied and Independent Financial Adviser before moving into compliance and risk. For the last fifteen years, Andrew has specialised in regulatory advice and conduct risk advisory services.
Working in particular with major banking groups and wealth management firms, his expertise spans from product design to distribution. His particular expertise is in remediation of historic and current risks (often involving crystallised instances of consumer detriment) and the mitigation of potential, future risks. Andrew has also significant expertise in performing regulatory health checks, product governance, review of provider / distributors' advice models and risk profiling.
Joining Huntswood from Ernst & Young, his previous role included a number of high profile engagements, where he led remediation and regulatory programmes at major retail firms. He has supported firms in their dialogue with the regulator which included attendance at the Regulatory Decisions Committee and Financial Services & Markets Tribunal as part of a supporting role for a firm subject to enforcementaction.
Andrew holds the CII Financial Planning Certificate and CISI Diploma in Investment Compliance.
Stuart has over 15 years' experience of leading and managing transformational change programmes across Fortune 500 companies both inside and outside financial services.
Stuart joined Huntswood from Deloitte where he was a senior manager in the Financial Services Programme Management practice; within this role he was responsible for managing large scale business transformation programmes for major financial services clients including Solvency II programmes, organisational acquisitions and cost reduction programmes. Prior to joining Deloitte Stuart spent six years working for Huntswood Consulting driving operational improvements from regulatory challenges for key financial services firms, including the management of complex TCF programmes and s166 PPI remediation project from inception to delivery, contacting over 200,000 end customers.
Stuart is focused on driving benefit from the challenges that organisations face, ensuring that services are delivered at a lower cost, whilst enhancing their customer relationships.
Clive is an experienced Management Consultant, with extensive regulatory knowledge (especially in training and competence), but also in people and performance improvement along with coaching. With 20 years’ financial services experience, Clive’s roles have included sales (as a consultant), sales management, training & competence management, compliance management and internal consultant. He also ran a region of over 300 financial consultants for four years with responsibility for sales delivery, compliance and development issues.
Nick has over 23 years’ experience within the financial services sector having worked as a regulator and at senior levels within regulated firms and management consultancies.
Nick joined Huntswood from the FSA where he was a senior associate and supervisor in retail conduct of business covering a broad range of retail financial services firms including IFAs, wealth managers, SIPP operators, mortgage advisers and general insurance brokers. During his time at the regulator he was a key member of the treating customers fairly (TCF) assessment program, the retail distribution review (RDR) implementation team and the business risk awareness workshops. Nick has extensive experience in all aspects and sectors of regulatory supervision, including individual case work, thematic projects, supervisory visits, conducting face to face and telephone firm assessments and regulatory change management. At the FSA, Nick was also responsible for delivering RDR roadshows and business risk awareness workshops to firms and compliance consultancies and led the regulator’s relationship with the Association of Professional Compliance Consultancies (APCC).
Before Nick joined the regulator he was head of quality and risk at a major outsourcer, responsible for the strategy and delivery of all aspects of quality assurance and operational risk management. Nick was also the client relationship lead on all projects, ensuring the smooth implementation of procedural change and regulatory change control. He was responsible for the strategic development of the TCF program, including implementation and monitoring of TCF tools and culture.
During Nick’s career he has held various senior positions dealing in all aspect of quality assurance and has extensive working experience of ‘quality models’ and a proven track record in successful accreditation of staff and consistently over achieving set quality targets. He also retains detailed knowledge of BSI audit accreditation standards and processes.
Nick has a simple ambition… "to assist firms in improving each and every customer's experience through simplicity, understanding & skilled interaction".
Caroline has over 25 years experience in the Financial Services sector and has held senior positions at Nationwide Building Society, Portman Building Society and Zurich Financial Services. Her expertise is in Conduct risk, Sales processes, Customer Excellence and Leadership and Culture in Banking, Savings, Mortgages, Insurance and Investment products.
Caroline joined Huntswood in June 2014 from Nationwide Building Society where she was Head of Service and Performance with responsibilities for all of their distribution channels, covering service, business conduct, risk and business quality assurance. She has held several senior roles in the financial services industry including, operational risk, complaints management, training and competence, sales operations, business assurance and rewards/incentives. Latterly she has developed programmes to achieve fair customer outcomes across the full spectrum of products. She is passionate about providing focused operational solutions that enhance the customer experience, whilst bringing simplicity to sales processes in order to reduce costs and reduce exposure to conduct risks.
Caroline has experience of designing and leading large scale transformation programmes – particularly in light of changing regulation and the fast paced development of digital solutions. She is focused on delivering real bottom line results for firms whilst maintaining excellent customer service and minimising operational and conduct risks.
Stuart has over 14 years of experience in the financial services sector. After studying Mathematics at Hull University, Stuart spent nine years working at regulatory bodies, firstly with the Building Societies Commission and then with the Financial Services Authority. During this time Stuart undertook a variety of roles including relationship managing the portfolios of retail firms, conducting ARROW risk assessments, implementing risk mitigation programmes, developing MCOB/ICOB policy and rules, project managing the authorisation work for mortgage lenders who applied to the FCA at NM, and devising and implementing the supervision strategy for mortgage lenders.
Stuart has run and been part of a number of engagements since joining Huntswood. These have included: being responsible for the governance and decision making on an FCA enforcement case relating to mortgage arrears handling, developing a vision and strategy for a top 4 retail bank to implement and embed treating customers fairly throughout the organisation, assisting a top 4 retail bank and a leading life and pensions provider in driving forward their implementation programmes in respect of product development and after sales care processes, developing and implementing a risk based approach to compliance monitoring within a leading life, pensions, and investment management group, and, providing on-going regulatory advice and compliance support for retail firms, particularly in relation to conduct of business regulation.
Stuart has expert knowledge of FCA rules and their application, is able to apply this knowledge to develop practical operational approaches within organisations and has a demonstrative track record of pragmatic delivery.
Tracy has 18 years' experience in retail financial services specialising in regulatory risk, compliance assurance and regulated sales. Tracy has recently led complaint handling assurance reviews as well as current business reviews to assess appropriateness and suitability for mortgage, protection, insurance and investment sales.
Prior to joining Huntswood, Tracy led and managed one of the compliance monitoring teams for the world's largest building society where she was responsible for the design and implementation of the annual compliance plan for retail sales. She managed the delivery of thematic and 'deep-dive' reviews, taking specific accountability for the delivery of high quality compliance reports to senior business executives. Tracy also led the firm's 'mystery shopping' programme across the full product range for a regulated sales force of circa 3500 FTE.
Tracy's other experience includes the role of senior compliance consultant providing advice and guidance on compliance policy with a focus on the on-going support and development for sales and marketing of mortgage, general insurance, protection and investment products. Prior to this, Tracy was responsible for the firm's training & competence arrangements, including construction and on-going review of regulated sales quality KPIs.
Tracy has a firm understanding of FSA rules and their application, is able to apply this knowledge to develop practical operational solutions with a proven track record of delivery. Tracy is fully FPC and CeMAP qualified.
Neil has over 25 years’ experience in the retail financial services industry across banking, insurance and consumer credit markets.
He joined Huntswood from a major bank, where he was a Senior Conduct and Compliance Risk Manager responsible for planning and managing quality assurance activity across the Retail division, including heritage brands. Prior to this, Neil was Head of Compliance at a niche mortgage lender where his responsibilities included:
Neil’s career has spanned various product providers and distribution channels, and he has held roles in sales, training, past business reviews and field-based T&C supervision. He has extensive knowledge of customer outcomes testing methodologies and also brings a wealth of practical experience of leading and managing compliance monitoring programmes both in the UK and abroad.
Neil is Level 4 qualified and holds various industry specific qualifications.
Mark will be responsible for the day-to-day management of this engagement. Mark has over 30 years’ experience within the financial services industry, specialising in regulatory risk and compliance advice having worked for large life and pensions providers and IFA’s, including Legal & General, Prudential and Misys. Most recently Mark worked for the world’s largest building society, where he was a senior manager in the Compliance Advice team. He led a team of consultants providing advice and guidance on regulatory change arising from UK and European governing bodies enabling the firm to prepare for forthcoming changes.
He was also responsible for providing regulatory advice in relation to the development of products and distribution channels for a range of products including; packaged bank accounts, credit cards, personal loans, general insurance, savings, protection and investment products, with a focus on conduct risks and customer outcomes.
Mark’s experience also covers a variety of engagements including, operational risk, past business reviews, large remediation programmes, complaint handling governance, root cause analysis, conducting due diligence reviews and financial promotions. Mark’s qualifications include ACII, AFPC and MAQ."
Simon joined Huntswood in 2012 after graduating from the University of Brighton with a first class honours degree in finance and investment where he specialised in complex investment analysis, investment strategy and the behaviour of financial markets. Prior to this, Simon gained experience working in the financial services industry as a mortgage and insurance consultant.
Since joining Huntswood, Simon has been part of a large project where he has operated as an MI analyst responsible for insight reports, trend analysis and progress reporting to the firm’s senior management. He has also developed tailored calculators for remediation and investment portfolio comparison purposes.
Simon has played a key role in the development of Huntswood’s propositions and is currently studying for the CII diploma in regulated financial planning.
David has over 15 years’ regulatory experience, working for the FSA and FCA until March 2014. During this time, David supervised firms in different sectors including Investments, Pensions and Retail Banking, This has given David a detailed understanding of the FCA’s expectation and requirements for regulated firms.
Whilst working for the regulator, David led on numerous Skilled Person reports on areas including pension transfers, pension drawdown and Unregulated Collective Investment Schemes (UCIS). Whilst in the Retail Banking division, David was lead supervisor for a number of banks and building societies, and was part of the supervision team for a C1 bank. This enabled David to demonstrate his skills leading meetings with, and influencing, firm’s senior management. David also led, and had involvement in, a number of Deep Dives, including sales and governance and culture.
David has extensive project management experience, including leading a project on the Retail Distribution Review. During his regulatory career he was also been involved in projects looking at Quality of Advice and Treating Customers Fairly (TCF). These projects gave David exposure to senior management at the FCA. He also worked with numerous stakeholders including HM Treasury, FOS and the PRA to ensure optimal regulatory outcomes were achieved.
Whilst at Huntswood, David has worked collaboratively with clients to ensure that engagements exceed requirements and provide value. He has recently led a project where he ensured that over six million customers were treated fairly during a legal transfer of policies. He has also led a mock FCA Deep Dive, controls review, authorisation applications and Conduct Risk Due Diligence reviews.
David is level 6 qualified and is both a fellow of the Personal Finance Society and a Chartered Financial Planner. He has passed 21 conduct focused exams, some with distinction, including Advanced Diploma exams (AF1, AF3, AF4 and AF5) and the IMC.
Cara has 17 years’ experience in retail financial services specialising in sales quality, the regulated sales/advice process and regulatory risk.
Cara joined Huntswood in October 2014 as a Consultant specialising in General Insurance and Mortgages. Her specialist advice areas include:
Prior to joining Huntswood, Cara was responsible for all aspects from sales to compliance for an independent mortgage and protection advisory firm. Preceding this Cara worked for Nationwide Building Society as a Business Development Manager.
Cara is CeMap level 3 qualified.
Matthew joined Huntswood in May 2014 from the compliance team at BUPA in Madrid, where he gained experience of European regulation and compliance in an internal environment.
Prior to joining BUPA, Matthew completed his MA degree with Merit in applied linguistics, whilst also winning the Boardman Prize for best dissertation that year. Since becoming a Huntswood regulatory consultant, Matthew has been deployed across a number of engagements covering consumer credit (CONC), general insurance, life & pensions and retail banking. Matthew’s project exposure has included:
Matthew is currently studying for the CII Diploma in Financial Planning.
Jess graduated in 2010 from the University of Reading with a degree in English Literature. In the same year Jess was elected as President of Reading University Students' Union, a full time post for one year, in which she provided strategic leadership, managing the charity of 18,000 members and over 70 full time staff. During this year Jess developed her facilitation and diplomacy skills acting as Chair of the Union’s Trustee Board, Governor of the University of Reading, and line manager the Union’s Chief Executive.
In 2011 Jess joined Huntswood’s Bid Management Unit and became responsible for overseeing the creation of compelling, aesthetically effective proposal documents. In 2013, Jess joined Huntswood’s Advisory Services practice as a Consultant of Learning and Development. Since joining Advisory Services, Jess has provided oversight on a number of client projects with responsibility for day-to-day contact and quality assurance and is in the process of completing a coaching qualification.
How we work
Corporate social responsibility
Governance, culture and controls
Investments and pensions
Managed client services
Permanent and interim