As lockdown restrictions continue to ease across the UK, the ‘stay alert’ message in England means that Globe IFA staff remain working remotely. Having shared some of our own lockdown stories over the last few months, for your latest Globe IFA team update, we head further afield.
Managing Director, Garry, and Director and Independent Financial Adviser, John, recently travelled to India, where Globe has teamed up with graduates and finance experts in the university city of Vadodara.
Recent regulatory changes have brought with them a massive increase in reporting and administration for all of our staff. The new team has been brought in to help us deal with the workload, freeing us up to use our time as we know it is best spent – in helping you.
During an incredibly useful trip, Garry and John found time to meet our new colleagues, attend a Kite Festival, and discover what life in lockdown has been like for one of our newest colleagues, Bhumika.
Some background on MiFID II
The Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID) is a regulatory framework designed to standardise investment services firms across the EU. Recent changes, known as MiFID II, have led to an overhaul of the way that some of our transactions are reported.
It has meant an enormous increase in the administration requirements for all IFA practices in the UK, including for us here at Globe.
To help us cope with the increased demands on our time without impacting on the service we provide to you, we have outsourced some of the additional administration work.
Our new team, based in the Indian state of Gujarat, will deal with all aspects of our MiFID 2 reporting procedures. Working in a supporting role, they will help us to collate material for annual reviews.
You won’t have dealings with this new team directly, but the support they provide to us will be invaluable in ensuring we maintain the same standard of care and service that you are used to.
Visiting the extended Globe IFA team
When Garry and John took a recent trip to meet our new colleagues, they arrived in the middle of a Kite Festival.
Garry reports that: “For a few days everything is given over to kites. They are everywhere, and of course, they are very colourful.
“The sport, familiar to anyone who has read The Kite Runner, involves flying your kite whilst trying to use it to cut the string on the kites of others.
“The strings are covered in glass to help cut the strings, but they also cut your hands. Many motorcyclists have bars mounted onto their handlebars to protect them from getting their throat cut by wayward strings.
“The festival is very colourful but potentially deadly.”
Leaving the festival, Garry and John visited our new team’s offices in Vadodara. Employees are mainly business graduates of the university and in fact, the company has recently been given an award for having recruited such a significant number of graduates.
All of the team have taken – or are in the process of taking – UK financial adviser qualifications and they are all very enthusiastic and competent.
It was John’s second trip to Vadodara, and Garry’s first. The pair spent three days with the company, learning about their systems and procedures as well as cementing all-important personal relationships.
Back in the UK, the Vadodara team will be connected to the Globe phone system, so talking to our new colleagues will be as straightforward as making a call to any extension in the office. Even the time difference is no great impediment as they are available until 14:30 each day.
Both Garry and John report that it was a very useful, not to mention a thoroughly enjoyable, trip, and a great chance to get to know all the members of the new team.
Garry reports: “Both John and I were massively impressed with the commitment shown by the team out there. They are highly efficient and accurate and have all the training you’d expect of professionals working in the industry.”
John adds: “Our clients won’t be dealing with them directly – they are there purely as a back-up for us. But we both left India confident that Globe’s operations are in safe hands.”
Time for some sightseeing
Having flown such a long way, Garry and John, decided to add a couple of days onto their trip, for a spot of sightseeing.
First, they departed by car for Udaipur, a city famous for its appearance in the 1983 James Bond film, Octopussy.
Garry reports that: “As well as the familiar hotels and streets used in the film, the city has splendid palaces to visit and a beautiful lake.”
“We spent our days doing the rounds of the usual tourist traps before flying back to our port of entry, Mumbai, where we had another day or so to explore, before returning to the UK.”
It was a great trip made all the better by the new friends made in Vadodara, and we welcome all of them to the wider Globe IFA team.
Life in Lockdown: India
During their time in Vadodara, Garry and John were able to ask about the lockdown experiences of our colleagues there.
The coronavirus pandemic has been a global issue, affecting families all over the world differently. Here’s what Bhumika Karmani had to say about her time in lockdown, and about how her family has dealt with the coronavirus pandemic.
“As I belong to a businessman’s family, my father never had enough quality time with us.
“With the implementation of lockdown, he is making evening tea for us, chitchatting with everyone in the room, helping Mom in her day-to-day chores, while I am working from home and learning from him: a lesson in ‘How to be organised’.
“Also, I want to add that I miss being in the office with my friends. That was altogether real fun! I can’t wait until we can all go back and meet each other again”
Globe IFA coronavirus update
Finally for this month, a coronavirus update from all of us here at Globe.
As lockdown restrictions continue to be lifted in England, we find our freedom slowly returning. As a result, we are once again able to offer face-to-face meetings.
We have an outdoor meeting space, offering plenty of room for social-distancing measures to be observed.
We have an indoor office too, similarly Covid-secure.
As UK businesses begin returning to work, we’ll be constantly adapting to ensure that our office is safe for both our staff, visitors, and clients.
Please contact us if you have anything you’d like to discuss.