CIRO wants to shake up how industry proficiency is measured

CIRO is asking for feedback on proposals to change the proficiency model ahead of a new set of standards

CIRO wants to shake up how industry proficiency is measured
Steve Randall

Canada’s investment industry regulator is proposing changes to the way proficiency is measured, which could mean an end to mandatory courses and fewer examinations.

The Canadian Investment Regulatory Organization (CIRO) has begun a consultation period for industry stakeholders to give their views on the potential changes which the regulator says will enhance its proficiency regime ahead of its planned launch of new standards in 2026.

Under the proposals, the current model of courses followed by exams tied to those courses would be replaced by an assessment-centric model with some elements of mandatory education and training.

The highlights of the proposals include:

  • Exams for each Approved Person Category based on the published competency profiles,
  • No mandatory courses as pre-requisites to exams,
  • A general industry exam based on competencies common across all Approved Person categories,
  • Mandatory professional conduct training upon approval,
  • Continuing Education (CE) training on topics mandated by CIRO annually,
  • Increase in baseline education requirements for Registered Representative (RRs) to include a relevant diploma, degree or 2 years of relevant experience working in financial industry,
  • Greater role for CIRO in program design and ongoing delivery

"The proposed model is intended to raise the proficiency bar and lower the cost of licensing and entry barriers for end-users," said Elsa Renzella, SVP, Enforcement and Registration. "Our goal is to ensure that our proficiency requirements are current and relevant to our approved persons and their sponsoring firms, and that our model can be more responsive to industry change.”