Iconium Limited, a leading UK developer of corporate governance and compliance solutions, today announced it has released the first available Treating Customers Fairly (TCF) template policy library. Delivered as a plug-in to their leading policy management solution, Policy Manager, this library will enable all Financial Services Authority (FSA) regulated businesses to fully demonstrate their compliance to the full range of TCF principles.
As the market regulator for all UK financial institutions, the FSA has expressed concern that the financial services industry is not treating customers fairly. It has mandated that all firms must apply strict TCF principles throughout their business, along with specific requirements to provide evidence that these policies have been developed, are being deployed and proving effective. The FSA requires that all firms should, at a minimum, have reached the âimplementationâ phase by the end of March 2007.
Authored by specialist finance sector consultancy Rawlings & Co, the Policy Manager TCF Library forms a key component within the implementation of a firm-wide TCF solution. It delivers the ability to rapidly refine, maintain and disseminate TCF policy, principles, guidelines and best practice to all employees, and to then monitor acceptance, understanding and awareness of the requirements via Policy Managerâs integrated and real-time reporting dashboard. In partnership with Rawlings & Co, future enhancements to the Policy Manager TCF Library will include integrated CBT training modules and tests.
Michael Gordon, Financial Services Consulting Director at Rawlings & Co comments: âUK firms clearly need to demonstrate that they have responded to the FSA on TCF and will therefore recognise TCF as a regulatory imperative. However, there are additional business benefits that flow from effective deployment of TCF. The cost of a TCF programme can be relatively low, yet the active promotion of a TCF culture, backed by appropriate development and deployment of TCF policies, processes and controls, clearly provides a means for driving long-term value creation. The business case for effective deployment of TCF is therefore compelling, and pay-back is all the more attractive if the Policy Manager TCF Library is implemented as itâs a highly cost-effective component within the TCF solution. Iconium Policy Manager provides an ideal platform for this TCF application and we are delighted to be working with themâ
The Policy Manager TCF Library enables firms to:
Â· accelerate the development of TCF policies tailored to the unique profile of the individual firm;
Â· deploy those policies on a firm-wide basis, whilst focusing each group within the firm on those sets of policies that relate to their job function;
Â· ensure that all relevant staff maintain the necessary awareness of all policies that relate to their role; and
Â· provide evidence that can be presented to the FSA to give proof that TCF directives have been adopted
The Policy Manager TCF Library draws upon the large body of material developed by the FSA to give guidance on what it considers to be appropriate TCF business practice. The Library contains a module presenting high level policies and principles which need to be understood by all staff and key business partners of the firm, along with a set of modules relating to specific business functions (e.g. Product Development, Marketing and Promotions, Point-of-Sale, Underwriting, Customer Servicing, Complaint Handling, Claims Handling, Debt Recovery and Management of Business Partners). These modules cover the full range of activities of retail financial institutions, including on one dimension product manufacturers, consolidators and distributors, and on a second dimension the full range of financial services products across banking, investment and insurance. This makes it easy to tailor the Library to the unique profile of each firm.
âIconium is extremely pleased to partner with Rawlings & Co to offer our financial service customers this unique policy library. UK financial organisations have been hit hard with an onslaught of bad press and consumer complaints regarding treating customers unfairly. The Policy Manager TCF Library will really help our finance sector clients to respond to the FSA initiative and to derive the associated business benefits.â commented Nigel Kilpatrick, Sales & Marketing Director, Iconium Limited. âRawlings & Co has continually demonstrated an immense knowledge of the financial services sector and the impact of TCF and it is a privilege to be working with them.â
Iconiumâs Policy Manager is widely used within the financial services sector as a best-in-class governance framework solution, and is an integral part of governance and compliance reporting.