| So How Does Our Trademarked Clear and FAIR Service Work in Practice?|
FAIR stands for Fact-find, Advise, Implement and Review.
If a client is considering using our services, we hold a first meeting with them which is at our expense and involves no obligation or commitment on their part. At that meeting, we’ll invite the client to explain what it is they are concerned about or interested in or what they want us to focus on. Once we have a broad idea of what the client wants, we’ll know whether we are likely to be able to help. In the unlikely event that we can’t, we’ll say so there and then and explain why, and the only cost to the client and us will be the time we’ve both spent.
If we think we are likely to be able to help – and usually we can – we invite the client to complete an in-depth fact-find with us and to ask us any questions they might want to ask. And that’s it for the first meeting. We don’t ask clients to commit to anything at that point. Instead, we send out by post what we call a ‘Welcome/Engagement Letter’ – a ‘WEL’ in our in-office shorthand. The WEL sets out what we understand the client wants, it explains what we can do and what it will cost. The idea is that clients get to decide, in the privacy, peace and quiet of their own home, without an advisor sitting opposite them, whether they want to proceed or not. We’ve created a way of doing business that enables clients to make informed decisions in a zero-pressure environment.
If the client wants to proceed then they sign and return one copy of the WEL with its accompanying Client & Fee Agreement Document, and we set to work on the necessary research and report-writing. At this stage, all the client is committed to paying is the basic fee.
Upon receipt of the signed WEL and Client & Fee Agreement Document, we proceed to complete our research and write our report and recommendations. Then it’s over to the client again. We don’t hassle or chase people; we’re advisors, not salesmen. ‘Foot-in-the-door’ tactics aren’t our style.
If on reading our report they decide that they don’t want to proceed further, only the basic fee is payable and that is the end of our involvement. If the client wants us to proceed with the recommendations that we’ve made, however, and around 99% do, then the basic fee and implementation fee are payable on completion of the work.So that’s Clear and FAIR. How could we be fairer?