Operating during lockdown
Practical tips and information
We have implemented various measures to protect our employees and clients. This infographic was developed to share information to assist you, your clients and your practice in these uncertain times.
Implications of the COVID-19 nationwide lockdown
Allan Gray Proprietary Limited has been designated as performing “essential services” and therefore is required to operate during the lockdown. As a result, we will remain operational throughout this period, and you will continue to be able to manage and service your clients’ needs.
We are committed to supporting you during this period
We recognise the importance of being deemed an essential business service and of being available to you, and your clients over this time. We have made significant changes to the way we work to ensure the safety of our staff, clients and the community and to work towards the crucial goal of flattening the curve of the spread of the infection. Most of our staff members are working remotely and only designated staff performing critical functions that cannot be completed remotely for specific reasons, will be working from our offices intermittently.
We encourage you to use digital channels as your first point of contact. Your secure Allan Gray Online account gives you the ability to download various client lists and investment reviews, to generate investment overviews and access your fee statements. Use the digital authorisation functionality, available on your secure adviser site, to submit and track instructions to your clients for digital approval. Our call and email services remain available if you require anything urgent and operations teams will continue to process instructions. As we settle into the changes described, the speed at which we are able to respond to your queries and requests may be impacted. We will be doing regular virtual events such as webinars, or other digital meeting formats to provide you with relevant and important information. This should enable you to remain informed and continue to meet your CPD requirements. We will be in contact regarding the details of these engagements in due course.
The Financial Sector Conduct Authority (“FSCA”) has indicated that advisers are not regarded as essential services in terms of requiring exemption from lockdown (exceptions to this are those dealing with critical claims, payment and premium support on behalf of insurers). However, our understanding is that your businesses should remain open to assist customers of financial services in this time of great uncertainty and should bedone remotely where possible. For more information, please contact the FSCA.
In addition, in the FSCA Communication 9 of 2020, the following important updates were shared:
The period for submission of certain financial statements in respect of the FAIS Act will be extended by four months.
Tools to help you stay connected
Here are some ideas to help you interact safely with clients during this time:
The Allan Gray Digital Authorisation process will facilitate compliant, paperless and secure transacting using an OTP for your client to securely approve the transaction. 87% of transactions submitted are approved within one day, while 30% are approved within 10 minutes. All you need is your Allan Gray secure online account, a valid email address and mobile number for your client. A 5-minute demonstration is available below.
You can submit the following instructions:
Meeting solution options
Zoom is an online tool to meet with clients via video
Sign up for Zoom in 3 easy steps by visiting the Zoom website.
Compliant electronic signature solutions
Where you need a signature in your practice, some of the solutions listed below can facilitate this.
SuiteBox, a company backed by Moonstone Compliance, gives you the ability to meet with clients digitally and sign documents in a fully compliant way. You can request a demo or access this service through the Allan Gray Adviser Services service provider catalogue at R350 per month (ex VAT).
QuicklySign is a digital signature platform that allows your clients to sign documents anywhere at any time. You can access the service for R385 per month through the Allan Gray Adviser Services service provider catalogue.
Safeguarding your practice from cybercrime
With fewer face-to-face interactions and more communication happening over email and other electronic methods, cybercriminals will be looking to take advantage.
Protect your business by: