Ali last wrote an update on his career in late 2018, where he discussed his exam journey so far with the Chartered Institute of Insurance. Just over two years on, Ali has completed his exams and no longer has to experience the dreaded 10 second wait after an exam has finished to get his results.

Ali is now fully qualified to provide independent financial advice to clients, so we thought we’d organise a 10 question quick-fire Q&A to see how things have changed in his career (we did allow more than 10 seconds for some answers though!)

Where did you grow up? The countryside of County Down, Northern Ireland.

Did you go to University? Yes, I joined the University of Aberdeen in 2012 and graduated with a Masters of Arts in Finance in 2016.

Did you join AAB Wealth straight from University? I did indeed, I graduated in June and started in September.

What attracted you to the firm? There were a couple of things which attracted me to AAB Wealth, firstly the firm did a presentation for a Personal Finance module I undertook at University, which is how I came to find out about AAB Wealth. From speaking with tutors it was clear the firm had a great reputation locally for offering high quality advice and being a growing business. This led to me researching the firm in greater detail when it came to applying for graduate jobs, at which point I became aware of the awards they had won both locally and nationally. At that point it seemed like a great fit and I thought it would be somewhere I would enjoy working!

When did you start professional qualifications? February 2017.

How many exams have you sat and how many do you have left? Twelve sat Zero left! I sat my last exam in September 2019 and am fully qualified to provide independent financial advice to clients.

How did your role change after completing your exams? Upon finishing exams in 2019 I transitioned into a client facing financial planner role, where I am responsible for developing relationships with new and existing clients and providing them with the best possible financial planning, to allow them to achieve their goals and objectives. Prior to finishing my exams I supported the other financial planners by compiling recommendation reports for them and analysing their clients existing investments.

If you could give your younger self one piece of advice what would it be? Always back yourself.

What is your next career goal? Obtain chartered status in May 2021. Although this will not change my day to day role, and the advice I supply to clients, it is recognised as the gold standard within the financial planning industry and demonstrates to potential clients a public commitment to professionalism and maintaining a high level of technical knowledge.

Describe working at AAB Wealth in 5 words: Enjoyable, rewarding, sociable, collaborative and supportive.