How ready are you for the FSB Examinations?
RECENTLY EVERYONE I speak to about the Financial Services Board’s ( FSB) regulatory examinations already knows about them and is aware that they have to pass an additional examination over and above the qualification requirement. This awareness is obviously a positive state of affairs. However, these same people seem to view their awareness as the only positive aspect and widespread negativity towards this examination prevails.
In an attempt to understand this negativity, I tried in my own way to explore the piece of subordinate legislation from which this need arises. The legislation is, in its intent, designed to ensure that both consumer and the industry are protected. The legislation means to overhaul and professionalise the work of the financial services sector.
As a result, financial services practitioners will have registration in common with other recognised professions including medical and allied health services, legal practitioners, engineers and accountants. There is no question that the professionalisation of the sector will ensure that its office bearers too are held in the same prestigious light by the public in the future. Professionalisation of the sector will also elevate the status of the individual practitioner working in the industry and will ensure that these true professionals will attract others aspiring to join it. This cycle of status and attraction certainly seems to apply across all other sectors with professional registration requirements. Status and esteem do not come easily however, and have to be worked for. Doctors, lawyers, engineers and accountants study for up to seven years and several write Board exams to reach that stage.
If you already have your credits or a qualification, you are almost there – you may only be one examination away. If you still need a qualification, there are one-year certificate programmes that you can study to reach the benefits of professionalism easily and quickly. I believe we should take the focus off the examination itself and shift it rather on to giving ourselves the best chance to be successful at the regulatory exam/s ahead and to contributing to the enhancement and development of the sector as a whole.
This is not as daunting as it may seem. You can achieve success in these exams by following the steps below: 1. Get the course material. Milpark Business School (MBS) has developed course material specifically for this examination. It is available for free and can be downloaded from the INSETA website or purchased at minimal cost from MBS directly. Work through the course material. The FSB advises candidates to spend at least three months preparing for the examination, so start as soon as possible. The good news is that you will no doubt already be familiar with some of the legislative content. Start making notes and tackle the book chapter by chapter. The examination is multiple choice. The exam consists of multiple choice questions (MCQs) and a pass mark of 66% is required. Practise answering MCQs to develop the skills needed. MCQ papers are not guessing games and contain no patterns. There are test-yourself questions at the end of each chapter in the book. You may also purchase practice papers from MBS for extra practice. If you still believe that you require additional assistance, a workshop may be just what you need to hone your studying and exam skills and ensure exam-readiness! Finally, be positive and confident and manage your time. Make sure you leave time at the end to focus on the tough questions. Answer the questions you are sure of first, ensuring that you get as many marks as possible up front!
Give this exam your best shot. Achieving success in this examination is a sure way of securing your future as a professional in this fascinating and rewarding sector.