“Trust is the Foundation of My Profession” - so goes the beginning of The Banking and Finance Oath. This is a time of great turbulence and also incredible opportunity in financial advice, where trust is front and centre as an issue.
As we know, the Australian Government has introduced reforms to raise the professional, ethical and educational standards of financial advisers in response to widespread concerns that current standards are too low.
As part of the reforms you will be required to comply with a code of ethics and have your compliance with the code monitored and enforced under compliance schemes approved by ASIC.
Ethics vary according to the issues and are very much a matter of judgement. Arguably, ethics is simply about how a person chooses to act because of who they are, and not because of what they are required to do by law.
The Banking and Finance Oath is positioned to complement regulation and compliance, which includes the FASEA Code of Ethics. The BFO provides an individual ethical framework, encouraging self-reflection and reinforcing the ethical underpinnings which are essential for a profession.
Ethics should have been a verb; every time you make a decision you ‘do’ ethics and the tenets are ‘doing’ commitments.
The public have contacted the Oath asking for advisers who are signatories. There is no doubt that having the BFO logo attached to your name will hold value, but this can’t be the driving reason to take the Oath. This is a personal commitment that travels with you like a passport. An opportunity to say to yourself, your peers and customers ‘I’m proud of the work I do, and I’m willing to be held to account.
This commitment can serve to assist you through this formal transition into professionalism and adherence to the FASEA requirements.
Please consider taking The Banking and Finance Oath – www.thebfo.org
As part of our upcoming major site re-fresh, Adviser Ratings will be acknowledging signatories to the Banking and Finance Oath with a badge that will appear on the profile of the adviser.