PIMFA, the trade association for the wealth management and financial advice industry, is hoping the first of a series of online masterclasses held recently will encourage young women and girls from diverse backgrounds to consider a career in financial services.
The masterclass, in partnership with the social mobility charity, The Brokerage, was one of the PIMFA’s best-attended events of late, with over 130 young women and girls registering to gain an insight into the wealth management and financial advice profession.
Lack of diversity
Diversity in the financial services sector has remained consistently low at approximately 17%, according to research from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). At present, women make up only 20% of executive committees and 23% on boards.
During the recent masterclass, attendees heard from senior industry leaders including PIMFA chief executive Liz Field, Sarah Soar, chief executive of Hawksmoor Investment Management and Tracey Davidson, deputy chief executive of Handelsbanken UK, who all gave their insights into how the financial advice and wealth management sector had changed since they entered the industry. They also shared highlights of working in the profession along with their advice for the next generation of talent.
Delegates also heard from female mentors including; Portia Wakefield, business analyst and Rebecca Pinchin project manager at Close Brothers; Gemma Farley, data and campaign manager at Openwork; Sandra Dailidyte, senior client manager at Brown Shipley and Lisa Ciccotto, head of HR business partnering and operations at Brooks Macdonald who shared their wealth management and financial advice career stories, how they’ve overcome hurdles and thrived.
PIMFA commits to D&I
Amongst other issues, they talked about the misconception that financial services is a male-only profession or that people within the profession needed to be very proficient at maths. They expressed a need for more women to enter the profession from a range of backgrounds to future proof the industry with a diverse array of talent.
The event was the first in a series of masterclasses PIMFA will be holding in partnership with The Brokerage over the coming months as part of its ongoing work to improve social mobility and diversity and inclusion, to educate and inspire young women to take their first step into the world of wealth management and financial advice.
PIMFA chief executive, Liz Field, commented: “As a champion for diversity and inclusion in the wealth management and financial advice profession PIMFA is proud to be working with the social mobility charity, The Brokerage, to support their initiatives and drive change. It is vital we encourage and support more young women into the profession and help them understand the range of careers they can access.
“I am delighted that our first event focusing on women working in the wealth management and financial advice profession was so well attended and would like to thank all those that spoke, as well as The Brokerage for what was a very informative and insightful event and I look forward to our next event.”
Diverse and inclusive
Katerina Rudiger, chief executive of The Brokerage, said: “We are delighted to partner with PIMFA and to be supporting them in their endeavours towards making the wealth management and financial advice industry more diverse and inclusive.
“The wealth management and financial advice profession provide an excellent career path for our talented, young people, in particular women, from disadvantaged and BAME backgrounds. Through events and masterclasses like this, we can raise awareness and provide access to opportunities, that our candidates would normally not have, and the success of the event speaks for itself!”