As financial advisers accept the challenge of increased professionalism, they have responded accordingly with record numbers embracing Kaplan Professional’s enhanced ‘Ontrack’ continuing education offering. According to 2022 data, there were almost 325,000 completions of digital modules in the Financial Adviser content library, which is an increase of nearly 15 per cent over the previous year. There are close to 26,000 subscribers to the library across Australia and New Zealand. This demonstrates that advisers are wanting to ensure their technical knowledge stays up to date, with a focus on ethical behaviour and emerging areas such as managed investments, exchange-traded funds and aged care (especially elder abuse). With the current continuing professional development standard mandating a minimum of nine hours in professionalism and ethics, not surprisingly the three most popular digital modules were: Ethics at work Ethical perceptions in financial services Establishing trust in financial services Kaplan Professional CEO Brian Knight said that with the industry embracing professionalism, the importance of advisers extending their knowledge and skills through ongoing continuing education has never been more critical. “As the leading supplier of continuing education, Kaplan Professional has invested heavily in enhancing the quality of Ontrack’s content output, reporting and user-experience. “Advisers have responded positively as they recognise that a profession is grounded on a balance of formal qualifications and ongoing continuing education, coupled with practical experience. “The feedback we are getting is there is a real demand for high-quality, original and unbiased technical continuing education content, which encompasses the whole range of areas and issues advisers may face in their professional practice. “It is also fundamentally important to advisers and their licensees that the continuing education they are completing is accredited and rigorously assessed within an educational framework. “Our continued focus remains to produce continuing education content that interests advisers, improves their knowledge, and increases their ability to specialise – we will continue to release these learning pieces twice a month. “We are planning to add to the more than 300 content pieces that our technical experts produce annually in a diverse range of formats to cater to many learning styles – more podcasts, videos and shorter micro-learning pieces. “We will also be expanding on our range of specialist short courses, while offering advisers more opportunities to be recognised for the continuing education they have completed through digital badging and micro-credentials,” he said. According to Knight, Ontrack also made ‘perfect sense’ to be utilised as a professional year tool. “As Ontrack is already being used by our clients as a professional year tool to record and track structured hours, we are expanding our offering with a dedicated ‘Financial Advice Fundamentals’ library for candidates and supervisors that we anticipate to launch in the coming weeks. “Embedded into the platform will be comprehensive professional year plan templates and ‘how to’ guides for candidates and supervisors. “Content in the library will focus on shorter, bite-sized learning pieces delivered through interactive digital modules, podcasts and videos to best suit a younger audience,” he said.