65% of advisers feel protected against COVID-19

Sixty-five per cent of financial advisers have revealed they felt sufficiently protected against catching COVID-19 if they needed to go back into the office or meet with clients, a new Personal Finance Society survey has found.

The society carried out the research after Boris Johnson urged employers to bring staff back into offices from 1 August if it was safe to do so.

The survey of 139 Personal Finance Society members in July also showed that 17% said they felt partly protected from being exposed to coronavirus while advising clients on their finances. One in 10 revealed they didn’t feel safe from COVID-19 while working in the current climate.

A total of 9% of those polled added that they did not know whether they felt safe or at risk continuing with their work this summer.

Personal Finance Society chief executive, Keith Richards, suggested the financial advice profession had responded quickly and effectively to lockdown to ensure support for clients remained available, but added that the the recovery has started amid uncertainty.

“Before reopening offices, a COVID-19 risk assessment should have been carried out in line with HSE guidance and measures must be taken to manage the transmission risk,” he commented. “It is vital the results of this risk assessment are shared with the workforce – and clients – if they are to feel confident about their safety.

“I would urge anyone concerned about their safety to review the Government’s COVID-19 guidelines and talk to their employer if they feel more could be done to keep them safe.

“Many in the profession have proven that during these challenging times they can work as effectively from home as they do in the office but for those with tasks that must be done in the office, the risk of catching coronavirus can be reduced by travelling to work at quieter times of the day, reducing how much face-to-face contact they have with others and always maintaining social distancing.”

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