Car buyers wanting to find qualified finance and insurance (F&I) salespeople can now search for them on the Institute of the Motor Industry’s (IMI) publicly accessible ‘professional register’.
The ‘Finance and Insurance’ search term has been added to the IMI’s online database of motor industry professionals this month following the association’s ‘F&I Accreditation’ scheme.
Launched in partnership with Alphera Financial Services, BMW Group’s motor finance division, the database has been designed to establish consistently high standards in the sale of finance products, helping dealers to improve customer satisfaction and confidence in the transaction process. The addition of accredited F&I individuals to the IMI’s professional register allows customers to confirm that the person they are dealing with is fully-qualified to provide the financial advice they’re offering.
Gerry Kouris, marketing manager at Alphera Financial Services, said: “The IMI register of accredited F&I salespeople is a demonstration of self-regulation in an industry where the regulator is looking for strong leadership and an example for others to follow. It shows that we have nothing to hide as an industry – and that we want to do business in a transparent manner based on mutual trust and respect between customer and financial advisor.”
In its 2018 annual report, the FCA proposed establishing an official ‘Directory’ – cataloguing the status and history of individuals working in financial services and serving as an important public record of lender behaviour. The IMI professional register is intended to co-exist with and support the FCA directory.
According to Alphera Financial Services, all participants will need to have passed and retain the standard SAF competence test on an annual basis before they can complete the IMI F&I Accreditation.
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This month Alphera Financial Services, BMW Group’s motor finance division, launched an incentive scheme for its UK dealer and broker partners. Alphera will reward partners who generate the highest levels of customer satisfaction, rather than the highest finance sales volumes.