A year in Business Review

Ben Wilson, Managing Director of Financial Services, shares his round up of how the Business Review practice has developed over the past year. The team is looking forward to the continued growth in regulatory driven projects in 2014.

The BR team at Grovelands

As 2013 draws to a close it is interesting to reflect on a year of challenging and exciting new opportunities, growth and new faces.

Our Business Review practice has three focus areas: PPI; Wealth; and Insurance & Banking. Since 2011 we have seen a huge demand for Complaint Handlers with PPI expertise and 2013 showed little sign of this changing, with continued requirements from existing and new clients alongside opportunities for contract extensions and overtime for existing associates.

How has PPI developed?

A notable development in PPI operations was a renewed focus on policy development with firms looking to develop policy on a granular basis, specific to particular product lines and periods in time. No doubt this was in anticipation of the new regulator’s stated focus on the culture and conduct of financial services organisations.

What effect has the new regulator had?

At the time the new regulator came in to being in April 2013 we saw a marked increase in the number of requests for resource to assist in Section 166 exercises. These opportunities differ markedly from the large volume PPI complaint handling requirements; they are usually small, discreet projects requiring a level of expertise beyond that required in a ‘business as usual’ complaint handling environment. The products covered by the Section 166 exercises were diverse and included the quality of advice given and the sales processes around pensions, investments and mortgages.

The volume of work outside PPI continued to increase throughout the summer, with significant projects commencing around remediation of Interest Rate Hedging Products and also training design and delivery professionals required as a result of changes brought about in the Mortgage Market Review.

What does the future hold for Business Review?

Whilst we can expect to see the volume of work created by PPI to reduce in 2014, we can expect to see continued growth in the volume and variety of regulatory driven projects.

To support this continued growth and the increasing specialisation required to service client needs, Grovelands has made substantial investments in the hiring of researchers and consultants in the Business Review team and in the development and training of our people.

We look forward to a new year full of cheer!

– Ben Wilson

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