This edition of the magazine provides insights on the impact of digitization and how it’s becoming more difficult for industries to gain clients limited attention. Members are no different, to be relevant in an ever-changing industry, the FIA had to refresh its strategic priorities to meet expectations of members and stakeholders.
In February 2022, the FIA Board and senior management team met in Sandton to review the FIA Strategy for the next 3 years. The previous strategy implemented from November 2017 to December 2021, focused on increasing membership value, building a center of intelligence, improving the FIA’s level of representation, and enabling transformation. Despite several challenges during this period, including capacitating the organization from “ground up” and the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, many of the outcomes were achieved.
The FIA is one of the four recognized trade associations in the financial services sector. The other trade associations represent banks, life insurers and non-life insurers.
In the period ahead, the FIA will strongly be focusing on implementing three strategic pillars to secure a sustainable and inclusive future for professional intermediary businesses, for the benefit of clients and all other stakeholders in the financial services industry. The strategic pillars include Professional and Organizational Development, Representation and Advocacy and Financial Sector and Market Information to promote the value of advice and intermediary services. The strategic pillars will also assist in addressing the inhibitors and gaps identified by the board.
Professional and Organizational Development will focus on skills development, consumer education and transformation. Advocacy and Representation will focus on building capacity in our regulatory department to influence and guide policy and regulatory developments in a constructive manner that leads to positive outcomes for stakeholders. Financial Sector and Market Intelligence will assist in obtaining relevant information and interpret data to engage stakeholders in a meaningful manner.
The FIA will continue to engage with all relevant stakeholders to ensure that our actions effectively contribute towards the strategic priorities of the sector. This includes fair treatment of clients and transformation that supports inclusive and sustainable economic growth in South Africa.
I would like to highlight to the readers who we are – the FIA is a community of professional advisory and intermediary businesses that firmly believe:
- that clients benefit from independent financial advice and intermediary services.
- that professional intermediaries play a very important role in the South African economy as they are instrumental to significant economic activity and much needed job creation.
- that professionalism is an imperative for the sustainability of the intermediary model.
- that development supports transformation of the sector.
Our mission is to guard, develop, promote, and represent professional advisory and intermediary communities, that work together to secure a sustainable future for advisory businesses, for the benefit of clients and all stakeholders in the financial services industry.
Our vision is to be a trusted source and preferred voice for advisors and intermediaries in South Africa.
The board also spent time challenging the core values which the FIA rests upon. It was agreed that respect, credibility, professionalism, commitment, and passion will form the foundation on which we serve our members and industry at large.
We are very excited about this new chapter. We believe that members and stakeholders will experience greater value and support from the FIA.
I wish to express my deepest thanks to ALL members for their support. Everything we have achieved and still aspire to achieve is for the benefit of our members.