The New Model Business Academy (NMBA), part of The SimplyBiz Group, is set to launch an apprenticeship programme.
NMBA was granted inclusion on the Register of Apprenticeship Training Providers in March 2017 and, in December, was the only financial services specialist-training provider to receive funding from the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA).
The programme will accept applications from this week for its first cohort of apprentices and on a quarterly basis from 3 April 2018.
Tom Hegarty, managing director of the NMBA, said: “There is a desperate need for more financial advisers to meet the needs of consumers and there have been very few, if any, viable solutions to support the entry of new advisers to the sector.
“This initiative by the NMBA is a major step forward towards solving this shortage through a modern apprenticeship programme. Though a relatively modest step initially, we expect it to expand significantly over the coming years.
“As well as developing this government initiative, the NMBA looks forward to working with product providers and other interested parties over the coming months and years to grow the pool of well qualified and professional financial advisers.”
Ken Davy, chairman of The SimplyBiz Group, added: “The process undergone by the NMBA to secure first its accreditation and then funding for our apprenticeship programme has been arduous and time consuming.
“The initial funding from the government is also lower than originally hoped, nonetheless it is an important first step and the urgent need for new blood in the financial advice sector meant that it was imperative we grasped this opportunity to help new entrants.
“The value of professional financial advice has been demonstrated time and again and, in order to ensure that we continue to meet the needs of the firms we serve and their clients, it was essential that we invested in helping to create the next generation of advisers.”