Talking Compliance: Introducing Jay Tikam, our Compliance Consultant

We’re very busy at rebuildingsociety, we’ve received our authorisation submission deadline (of late November) from the FCA and we’re hard at work refining our systems and controls, marketing literature and other resources needed to operate a fully compliant financial services (FS) business.

Jay Tikam, our Compliance Consultant, came to Leeds last week to deliver training to everyone in the team on the transition we are making in becoming a small but important FS business.

Much of the transition is cultural

For us, compliance is not a ‘department’ or a ‘business prevention’ function, rather its part of everyone’s remit. We all have a role to play in wining and keeping the trust of our customers. Checks and processes have been adopted from the birth of the business and we have a good history of how the business has evolved in the last 30 months. Our decisions have been underpinned by putting our customer’s values first.

We have a lot to learn

Many of us are new to the FS industry. So we undertake training for the whole company to understand key financial concepts, such as the make-up of a balance sheet, the role of the directors and obligations of running a company. We also like to share best-practice training so when we are especially proud of our achievements we share that experience among the team. We get a real kick when we WOW a customer.

You can expect more…

The FCA are on a mission to clean up the FS industry from all the malpractice. The team at the FCA have an important job to do and in many ways they now have more powers than the police!

If we screw up, I’ll go to jail…

The repercussions are serious. If there is any activity in the company that’s deemed to be criminal then I could face jail time. That’s the level of responsibility that the CF3 (that’s FS jargon for the CEO of a financial services business) takes on – Jay was very kind in pointing this out to me.

We want our attitude to give us the edge

Good conduct, is part of the rebuidlingsociety ethos. Its in our DNA to serve customers well. However big we get, we’ll always respect that our mission was born from the monumental failure of the banking system, its self-interest and moral hazard. I’ll keep my team in shape, so that they look after our customers, who in turn, will look after the business, which will look after me.

Gaining the advantage

We want to change the FS industry for the better, there are three ways we feel we can achieve this:

  • Customer Intimacy – We want to stay close to our customers
  • Hyper Efficiency – We want to remove all unnecessary costs (as per amazon model)
  • Product Leadership – We plan to innovate to create previously unrecognised value

Regulatory Principles

  • Integrity – A firm must conduct its business with integrity
  • Skills, Care & Ddiligence – A firm must conduct its business with due skill, care & diligence
  • Management & Controls – A firm must take reasonable care to organise and control its affairs responsibly and effectively, with adequate risk management systems
  • Market Conduct – A firm must observe proper standards of market conduct
  • Consumer Interests – A firm must pay due regard to the interests of its customers and treat them fairly
  • Communication with Clients – A firm must pay due regard to the information needs of its clients, and communicate information to them in a way which is clear, fair and not misleading
  • Conflict of Interest – A firm must manage conflict of interest fairly, both between itself and its customers, and between a customer and another client
  • Customers: Relationship of Trust – A firm must take reasonable care to ensure the suitability of its advice and discretionary decisions for any customer who is entitles to rely on its judgment
  • Client Assets – A firm must arrange adequate protection for clients’ assets when it is responsible for them
  • Relationship with Regulators – A firm must deal with the regulators in an open and cooperative way, and must disclose to the appropriate regulator appropriately anything relating to the firm of which the regulator would reasonable expect notice.

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