KUALA LUMPUR: The financial advisory industry in Malaysia is set to receive a boost with the launch of the first Fee-For-Service Financial Advisory Mentoring programme in Malaysia.

The programme is undertaken by Whitman Independent Advisors, with the support of the Financial Planning Association of Malaysia (FPAM) and the Malaysian Financial Planning Council (MFPC).

This marks the first such mentoring programme by a financial advisory firm and supported by two of the industrys leading financial planning associations. It also emphasise the current need to create awareness and nurture more fee-for-service financial advisory professionals in Malaysia.

To kick-off the programme, Whitman with the support of MFPC and FPAM, is organising the 2016 Money Optimisation Summit at Sime Darby Convention Centre on July 30.

The one-day industry-driven conference aims to share the best and proven practices from leading players in South-East Asia, offer solutions on how financial services professionals can reframe the way they address the challenging demand of the Malaysian middle class, and ultimately transform and grow their businesses to the next level.

FPAM CEO Linnet Lee said in a statement on Wednesday the facilitation of a mentoring programme for aspiring financial advisors is an industry game changer.

It addresses present industry gaps such as the need for practical hands-on training and knowledge transfer which is crucial to their professional development and progression.

Such issues have prevented many of our Certified Members from providing comprehensive fee-for-service financial advice.

Echoing the sentiment, MFPC executive director Chung Kar Yin added: Financial planning was introduced in Malaysia since early 2000s, and in many ways the growth of fee-for-service financial advisory services has been slower than desired due to various challenges facing practitioners.

These challenges include the ability to deliver comprehensive financial planning solutions to clients, and addressing the perceived negative response from the Malaysian public toward paying fees for financial advice.

The lack of experience and confidence in offering holistic independent financial advisory services has resulted in the financial advisory industry being dominated by commission-led activities, where industry players are mainly focusing on selling multiple products in return for commissions instead of commanding a professional fee.

Under this programme, certified financial planning professionals such as Certified Financial Planners (CFP)and Registered Financial Planners (RFP) will be given the opportunity to be exclusively mentored by a team of senior Independent Financial Advisors (IFA) from Whitman Independent Advisors for a duration of six months.

As a proponent and pioneer of fee-for-service advisory, Whitman is prepared to take a leading role supporting the goal of our regulators and professional associations to nurture fee-for-service financial advisory practitioners and make a truly positive impact in the industry.

We are prepared to share our 16 years of experience as a successful fee-for-service financial advisory firm that has been able to stay true to the label and thrive in this nascent industry, noted Whitman Independent Advisors Sdn Bhd managing director Yap Ming Hui.

During the six-month mentoring period, CFP professionals and RFP graduates would be exposed to the experience of working with fee-paying clients using the proprietary Money Optimisation System developed by Whitman.

They would gain comprehensive hands-on training that is designed to equip them with the necessary exposure, skills and expertise to advance in their fee-for-service financial advisory profession, he said.