Guest blog: the driving force in money matters in Scotland

Guest blog: the driving force in money matters in Scotland

Recently Money Advice Scotland held its 26th Conference. Yvonne MacDermid, Chief Executive of Money Advice Scotland, explains the importance of sharing best practice.

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Yvonne MacDermid
Chief Executive, Money Advice Scotland

03 July 2015

"We know there is a lot of really good work taking place, but we need to share that good practice."

Recently Money Advice Scotland held its 26th Conference, entitled “Destination wellbeing – need a financial sat nav? The headline sponsor RBS, (whom we have worked with for nearly two decades), was there in full force to support the event.

Delegates came from all over the UK, all with a sense of purpose – to learn more, take it back to the workplace and effect some changes. Whether it is policy or process changes, what counts is that there is a real will from the floor of conference to makes things better for consumers.

The keynote speeches and workshops certainly provided food for thought. Everything from scams affecting people’s money, through to how do we embed financial capability into our everyday life, regardless of age or gender? Also, regulation played a significant part in conference as it has affected many delegates whether from an FCA point of view, or due to the changes in the Bankruptcy legislation through the Bankruptcy and Debt Advice (Scotland) Act, or BADAS as it is affectionately known.

There are big challenges ahead as the delegates learned, and that a “one size” won’t fit all. Consumers are not homogenous, have different needs, at different times in their lives.

As mentioned, the conference heard of the importance of financial capability as a starting point, but recognising this isn’t something that will happen overnight, rather a longer term strategy. It requires strong partnerships, many of whom attended conference, and who are willing to “move the cheese”.

We know there is a lot of really good work taking place, but we need to share that good practice.

The key messages were of the real need for communication, collaboration, co-ordination, consistency, and co-operation.  The conclusion, given that life is so complex when it comes to financial decisions, was that maybe we do need some kind of financial sat nav after all!

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