What is IAG?

IAG stands for Information, Advice and Guidance. Although the acronym is often used in Careers, it is also an essential topic for any impartial organisation who serve to educate.

MyBnk provides information and guidance but not advice.

Information, advice and guidance all have their own definitions and relate to fact or opinion. When delivering content, MyBnk are clear that we do not serve to advise anyone. Although we are experts in core subject knowledge, we are not qualified to provide advice.

Information is simply the transfering of core facts i.e. the difference between a current and savings account.

Advice is based on opinion of what one should do with some information for example, ‘I would advise that you open a savings account for your extra money’. To give financial advice in the UK, you must be regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Those who provide financial advice, are responsible and liable for the accuracy, quality and suitability of the recommendations they make.

Guidance can provide options and signposting, also based on opinion, although there is usually a need for experience and/ or a qualification. Those who provide guidance are responsible for the accuracy and quality of information provided.

So whilst guidance is more likely to contain information, advice serves not only to inform, but also make individualised recommendations on next steps for someone.

You can imagine how this can be a tricky subject when speaking to young people about their money! It’s important to remain impartial and not been seen as a source of financial advice for young people, else you could be liable if their financial decisions and actions go wrong or do not work out for them.

The Money Guiders programme from The Money and Pensions Service defines the differences between advice and guidance clearly:

So why is it so important to understand the difference between advice and guidance?

Let’s consider the PPI scandal that rocked the financial world. Banks and financial organisations have to be incredible careful to give impartial information and guidance to people rather than advice. The PPI mis-selling issue came about because staff selling the product did not explain the products fully which meant that a number of people ended up paying for a product they were never eligible to claim for i.e. those with pre-existing medical conditions. In these instances, customers should have been provided information and guidance for them to make their own informed decision about whether they needed the product.

Use the link below to take our short quiz. Are you able to identify which of the statements are advice and which are guidance?