Morgan Stanley is enrolling its financial advisers in a 150-hour online course to improve the service provided to firm's wealthiest clients.
According to specialised media outlet Advisor Hub, the 500-strong private wealth management group's advisors will be required to complete the course which culminates in a two-day in-person exam, in order to obtain a Family Wealth Director (FWD) designation.
Advisers who fail the tests will be allowed to re-sit them. Morgan Stanley's private wealth management group comprises 270 teams, and all will be required to have at least one FWD recipient in their number by the end of 2019.
The program is designed to ensure that advisers are making use of the Family Office Resources unit. Formed in March of last year, the unit comprises 66 specialists that advise UHNWIs and their family offices in issues from tax planning to "lifestyle advisory".
The family office resources unit, which Morgan Stanley expanded last year, includes specialists in areas such as estate planning and philanthropy and is aimed at helping Morgan Stanley's advisers compete with specialty firms such as Rockefeller, the news outlet reports.