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Specialists committed to professionalism

There was a growing commitment by SMSF specialists to be professionals in this critically important superannuation segment, regardless of their business size, according to the SMSF Association.

Following the conclusion of its state technical conferences in five mainland capitals, SMSF Association chief executive Andrea Slattery pointed out to the almost 1000 delegates who attended the events that the next 12 months were critical for the sector, and as SMSF Association specialists they had to lead the way by continuing to offer the highest level of professional advice and services.

“What was extremely encouraging was the recognition of this need to continue to improve their professionalism, irrespective of whether these SMSF specialists worked for a small, independent advice firm or were at the corporate end of the spectrum,” Slattery said.

“There is a strong realisation across the multi-disciplinary professions that comprise the membership of the SMSF Association that they can’t afford to wait for the government to say ‘enough is enough’ and then legislate to protect consumers.

“The SMSF profession needs to remain on the front foot.

“Although it’s widely recognised by government, regulators and higher education institutions that SMSF specialists are ahead of the game, what impressed me was the fact that no one at the conferences was suggesting they did not need to do more in terms of professional development to further enhance their skill set.”

She noted the association’s move to enlist trustee members was gaining momentum, with growing recognition that having better-informed trustees was a core benefit for advisers.

“It’s the association’s firm belief, based on sound research, that better-informed and educated trustees are more likely to seek specialist advice,” she said.

“We have developed our Trustee Knowledge Centre website to target SMSF trustees not using advice, as well as assisting our specialist members educate their clients.

“As many of our members have said when their clients use the trustee education service, the fact they are more knowledgeable makes their job easier in providing genuine strategic advice.”

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