New/Hoping to be/Struggling IFA

Good Morning All,

I'm currently looking to do the CII's diploma, I've started the R01 and would be looking to complete the advance dip within the next year. I come from an Insurance Account Manager/Protection adviser role. However, i'm struggling to find any work experience from an IFA firm. Trust me when I say this, I've tried near enough every firm in Manchester! I work nights but am willing to work for free, heck i'll pay someone for work experience.

It may sound a bit ambitious to do that many exams in 12 - 18 months. However, I've put a lot of thought into it and it's something i'm willing to take the risk with it. Even if that means I've got to do the level 6 before someone will take me on. So... instead of waffling on, I know this is a complete shot in the dark but is there anyone in the Greater Manchester area (30 mile region) whose willing to take a bright, hard working individual on for some FREE work experience. I can make some great tea as well, I have experience in protection products (Life, CIC, Funeral Plans and Over 50's). I would even be willing to work as a protection adviser for a firm on a voluntary basis. Anything just to get my foot in the door.

B Awan

P.S Sorry if this is the wrong forum to post this, I didn't mean to offend anyone.


  • Hi there,

    You might like to try posting in the facebook group 'Lifetalk - financial adviser mastermind with Phillip Calvert' lots of IFAs there! I assume you've advertised yourself on Linked In, Indeed etc. Make it clear you are willing to do admin to get experience in an IFA firm. No-one will let you advise immediately so to appeal the IFA firms short term needs, you want to emphasise your admin skills and experience. Then prove yourself and take more stuff on. Look for a fairly fluid team structure to give you that flexibility but careful this firm isn't too unstructured, they don't get much done!

    I imagine lots of people would like to be an IFA within a year but it generally takes much longer. SJP will likely give you a quick start career, but SJP is not for everyone and you have to take real care about what you sign. Good luck!


  • Hello Clare,

    Thank you for the reply, I've sent a message to the group admin today and i'm hoping they reply soon. To be honest, i'm not looking to advise at the start as I know it's a long process. Ideally, I would like to start off in a trainee para-planner role or junior ifa administrator. Even if it means I have to earn minimum wage then i'm prepared, this is something I want to do and have my heart set on.

    I'm simply looking for some work experience, be it admin related or whatever is needed. I would even be willing to drive anywhere in the country for a few hours experience if needed. I genuinely appreciate your help, I feel ashamed in asking this but if you never ask you never win... Does your firm have the opportunity for any work experience?

    B Awan

  • We are based on the south coast and we want another adviser before more support staff. But thank you for asking and best of luck with your future.

  • JStyleJStyle Member
    edited February 13

    @Matteo94 Hi! I have just come across your post, how did it go? Have you found a company that offered you free work experience or a trainee/junior position?

    I am pretty much in the same situation and mindset, but in Sheffield. I have become a robot, sending speculative applications to every single IFA around haha. My conversation skills over the phone have also improved drastically!! But yeah, I came to realize that even with experience - although in a slightly different field - one wants to look at entry level positions like junior or trainee paraplanner/administrator. I've applied for so many offers, and with no exceptions, they got all rejected or remained unanswered. The channel that seems to be working better is to target recruitment agencies that advertise such roles, cause they potentially have more in stock; especially trainee positions. And call them and explain your situation/background. This is what has happened to me so far, and I got my CV sent to some companies through those agencies. Waiting for interviews with the companies but still, this is one step further in the process!

    Will try to update later, hope it is all good for you!


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