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CII extends suite of ethical support with practical guidance for SMEs

Chartered Insurance Institute | Chartered Insurance Institute

3 min read Partner content

Two ethical guides to help employers articulate, incentivise and demonstrate ethical culture in the workplace have been launched today by the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII), adding to the wide-ranging support available from the professional body.

The CII'sEthical culture:building a culture of integrity and Ethical culture: a practical guide for small firms, are intended to provide a helping hand to all firms, but especially SMEs, who typically have less resource to deal with these issues. A third guide in the series is due to be published later this year.

The past five years have seen the CII invest heavily in a number of initiatives providing guidance and support to members, to ensure they not only understand but also show awareness of the code of ethics and its practical requirements. Today's new guidance adds toYour practical guide: Demystifying the Code of Ethics,published in 2012,and this year's online 'ethics toolkit' for financial advisers.

The CII's increased spotlight on ethics echoes greater scrutiny by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) on culture; this combined with intensified public interest following the LIBOR crisis and the subsequent Banking Standards Commission report, which called for increased professional standards in the banking sector.

Early findings from a forthcoming skills survey of CII members indicates there is an increased awareness and requirement for support from professionals themselves, with three quarters of respondents (74%) saying they think there needs to be greater emphasis on ethical and conduct training and support.

Commenting on the new CII guidance, David McIntosh, chair of the CII Professional Standards Board, said:"While there is a clear understanding of the need for change, many individuals and firms could struggle to find a practical way of articulating, incentivising and demonstrating how they pursue high standards of conduct. This is not an easy area for those who are used to working with clear cut compliance rules. That is where professional bodies like the Chartered Insurance Institute can play a vital role.

"As the independent chairman of the CII's Professional Standards Board, I think the work of the CII in recent years to promote high standards of conduct just as important as their work to promote high standards of technical competence.

"That is why I welcome the CII series of ethical guidance, of which this publication is the first, as another practical tool to help guide the profession - whether for individuals on their own or through their firm - and to drive a step-change in the culture of financial services for the long-term benefit of the public."

The guidance is not intended as a compliance tool but as a guide to provide help and support thinking of individuals and their firms in meeting the challenge to raise standards in the public interest.

Ethical culture: building a culture of integrity

Ethical culture: a practical guide for small firms

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