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Kaplan partners with college to create three new certifications

Yasmine Masi22 February 2024
Graduate holding diploma

Kaplan Professional has inked a deal with the US-based College for Financial Planning to introduce three new certifications for Australian advice practitioners and financial services professionals.

The new designations are Financial Paraplanner Qualified Professional (FPQP), Chartered Retirement Planning Counsellor (CRPC), and Accredited Behavioural Finance Professional (ABFP). Individuals can apply for the certification based on previous studies of particular subjects or a full qualification with Kaplan Professional.

This comes after more than 50 years of the Certified Financial Planner designation being recognised globally, with 12 certifications now available through the College of Financial Planning and over 100,000 holders worldwide.

“The introduction of these globally-recognised designations to the Australian market offers more ways for individuals to showcase their hard-earned expertise and knowledge, enhancing their credibility and trust in the eyes of consumers,” Kaplan Professional CEO, Brian Knight, said.

“Since the introduction of the Financial Adviser Standards, we have had thousands of individuals who have completed their education pathways with us; many would already meet the educational criteria to be eligible for these designations.

“With the legislation of the experience pathway, we have received strong feedback that those who have committed to their education pathway should be aptly recognised – we want these designations to be one form of reward for their efforts.

“We strongly believe there will be significant appetite amongst the Australian financial advice  community to bolster their credentials, complementing their education, experience and any other designations they may have earned with an industry association.”

Knight said the new certifications offer practitioners ways to rejuvenate their skillset as the needs of clients continue to develop and change, and help to display their achievements and reputation to clients.

“Those who earn these designations can showcase their credibility, expertise and knowledge through added credentials on their adviser profile, website, business cards and other digital marketing materials, which may help attract clients and employers seeking well-qualified financial advisers and financial services professionals,” he said.

There are some fees associated with the certification, including a one-off $395 to assess and issue the designation, $90 every two years to renew the certification alongside maintained annual CPD requirements and any tuition fees associated with courses or subjects required prior to receiving the certification.

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2 months ago

If FPA hadn’t damaged the CFP designation so badly by giving it away to undereducated grandfathers, it would be the undisputed peak designation for financial planning by now. Instead CFP numbers are declining in Australia while growing elsewhere in the world, and they have left the way open for fragmentation and confusion with the sort of stuff being introduced by Kaplan.

2 months ago

Kaplan has updated their website and has benchmarked these designations against their own subjects from their MFinPlan. In my experience of applying for prior learning (equivalent postgrad university subjects to their MFinPlan), I would have to repeat subjects for these designations… on the other hand, CRPC and ABFP look meaningless because they are mapped exclusively against 4/5 core subjects from Kaplan’s GradDip/MFinPlan.

This is another way for Kaplan to cash in on advisers who have finished the GradDip/MFinPlan with them and to create ongoing revenue without requiring any further studies, or providing any tangible benefit.

The dilution of designations here will not help consumers and I cannot take these seriously.