Planners could unintentionally breach clients’ privacy

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The largest provider of business process outsourcing for Australian accountants and superannuation administrators of SMSF, Sundaram Business Services, this week announced that they would be training their staff in Australia’s RG146.

The company currently has around 200 people dedicated to Australian financial services processing in Chennai, and 30 staff have already achieved RG146 qualifications.

“The training program reflects our commitment to service excellence and our expectations of further growth in the SMSF processing area and other areas such as para-planning support,” said Sundaram’s global head of business development Harish Rao.

Rao highlighted the risks that Australian businesses take when outsourcing: “Companies outsourcing their business processes are putting their business on the line, so they need an uncompromising approach to security and quality and a partner they can trust.”

Sean Graham, consultant for Assured Support, also said that there were many risks that planning firms might not be taking into account when choosing to outsource their business. “In terms of the admin I’d still be worried about outsourcing that overseas because of the control issues,” said Graham. “It’s still risky... you’ve still got to be satisfied in the capability of the people you’re outsourcing to. I’d still be worried about the release of personal information; particularly, since it’s going across border, whether or not the clients’ consented to that and whether or not their privacy policy’s allowed it.”

He said RG146 qualification was a good way to give some assurance to the advisers using the service that the people who are generating the documentation at least have the technical capacity to understand it. “They won’t have relevant experience, which is the underside of it…it’s better than outsourcing to people who don’t have any of that education, but I still think it’s not as good as other options available to you.”