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A Day in the Life of a Compliance Officer.

Helen Webster has worked at Momentum since October 2010. Starting as a Broker, she developed her knowledge before taking on the role of Compliance Manager in 2017. She works alongside another compliance officer, and between them they make sure both Momentum and its broker partners are up to date and compliant with Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) regulations.

What does a compliance officer do?

Insurance is a highly regulated industry, and a compliance officer’s job description includes monitoring compliance with internal policies, regulations and the relevant law. I have to keep records of what our broker partners and different departments are doing. If there are issues, I follow up with them to make sure they’ve sorted out the problems.

I have to train everyone up on the regulations and tell them what the impact is if we don’t comply with the regulations. I also have to help pull together information for FCA reporting purposes. I spend a lot of time helping new broker partners with the compliance element of the onboarding process when they join Momentum. If they get this right, there are less likely to be issues in the future.

What does a typical day look like for a Momentum compliance officer?

The office is always busy, and we’re growing all the time. It’s exciting to be involved in such a successful network, and it means as soon as I get in, there’s lots of work waiting for me to get stuck into.

8am: Like most people in the office, the first thing I do when I sit down at my desk is check my emails to make sure nothing urgent has come in overnight. I might have a few follow-ups to fire off about previous issues. I’ll chase insurers or broker partners for outstanding documentation or audit requests and check my diary to see what the rest of the day holds.

9am: I might attend a progress meeting to see if we’ve got any new broker partners joining us or to discuss any issues partners are having. We’ll also check whether there are any new regulations or amendments to existing ones we need to know about.

10am: Mid-morning I’ll make some phone calls to broker partners or send them emails about outstanding documentation. I’ll also help them with any queries they have.

11am: Part of my job as a compliance officer is looking after internal compliance. Our staff need to be competent to do their jobs, so I arrange training for them in our dev zone. There are several tests on there that keep them up to date on regulations. I’ll add new ones or check that everyone has completed the tests. I’ll also update our IT systems training courses and those about different insurers – for example, which risks they are looking for.

1pm: The afternoon usually starts with me doing some work on our partner audit programme. We’ve set up a six-month audit programme for new partners to make sure they’re doing OK in the early days. It helps to identify training opportunities, and I get involved when there are problems they need help with. We want everyone to follow the same process, and over the six months we help them get to grips with their compliance work.

2pm: I’ll spend some time with my colleagues dealing with internal compliance queries and answer questions about broker partners’ processes and procedures.

3pm: Sometimes, broker partners will come in and carry out audits on their files to make sure they meet their requirements, and we’re putting the right businesses on cover. They’ll check that quotes are correct, especially those which we put through manually rather than through e-trade. I’ll facilitate the audits for them. Occasionally I’ll visit broker partners at their offices to see how they’re getting on and help them iron out any issues they’re having with documentation or systems.

4pm: We’re putting together ‘how to’ manuals for each of our main products, for example, motor trade or fleet insurance, so I’ll do some work on them. I’ll pull together information on what documentation we need for each product, any queries clients might contact us about, how to put presentations together for market and the benefits of that kind of business.

What is your favourite part of the role?

I love helping our broker partners resolve complaint issues. Nine times out of 10, we get a good resolution. I also enjoy helping our new broker partners. I’ll often help them get used to the system and e-trade facility and show them how to use the documentation the system automatically generates. I like to get to know the broker partners. Rather than dreading a call from the ‘compliance police’, I want them to be comfortable coming to us with their compliance queries.

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