Insurers get more time to implement new appraisal system for agents

AIA Customer Service Centre located at 1 Finlayson Green. Insurers and financial advisory firms will be given more time to fall into line with a new framework to be used in assessing the performance of their sales staff and how they are paid. --
AIA Customer Service Centre located at 1 Finlayson Green. Insurers and financial advisory firms will be given more time to fall into line with a new framework to be used in assessing the performance of their sales staff and how they are paid. -- PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Insurers and financial advisory firms will be given more time to fall into line with a new framework to be used in assessing the performance of their sales staff and how they are paid.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said in a statement on Thursday that it will "provide the industry with a one-year grace period to familiarise themselves with the framework before effecting the requirements in legislation in January 2016."

The initial target for the new remuneration framework to take effect was January next year, after the MAS accepted most of the recommendations by the Financial Advisory Industry Review (Fair) panel in September last year.

While firms still have to put in place the new framework from Jan 1 next year, penalties will not be imposed during the first year of implementation.

Enforcement will start in January 2016 to give the industry time to adjust to the new model and for MAS to fine-tune the requirements where necessary.

Known as the "balanced scorecard" approach, the new framework will take into account non-sales factors in determining the pay of the agents and their supervisors.

If the agent is deemed to have failed in areas such as not selling suitable products or not giving adequate information to the customer, they could lose their variable pay, while their supervisors' pay could also be cut.

MAS gave the update in a consultation paper on the legislative changes needed to implement the Fair initiatives.