Becoming Directly Authorised

Considering direct authorisation?

No one knows the route to direct authorisation better than we do – and no one provides support to more directly authorised firms than we do. Our expert team can guide and support you every step of the way and we will even help with your application to the FCA.

With Compliance First, our Business Development team will assist you in completing your FCA application to the highest specification ensuring the process is as smooth as possible. You can use our online tracking facility to monitor the status of your application and contact your Business Development Manager at any time to discuss the progress of your application.

Compliance First is part of the UK’s largest supporter of directly authorised advisers and our specialist applications team have helped over 200 firms become directly authorised over the past 18 years in group. Your dedicated Business Development Manager will assist you in completing your FCA application to the highest specification, ensuring the process is as smooth as possible. You can use our online tracking facility to monitor the status of your application and you can contact your application manager at any time to discuss your concerns.

So, relax and start your journey with Compliance First. We’ll guide you through every step of the process and always be on hand for any questions or support.

  • Take control

    Once you’ve decided to make the move, the first step is to arrange a meeting with your local representative. Book a meeting with a member of our team and your Business Development Manager will explain what to expect.

    We'll explain likely timescales, the FCA’s approach to authorisation, and how we support you throughout the process. If needed, we can help you decide on the most appropriate business structure

  • Guided support

    Your dedicated Business Development Manager helps you compile supporting documentation and complete your application.

    We work with you on the final draft, make the final checks and submit your application to the FCA. Our experienced team are dedicated to making the transition as seamless as possible, and we’ll be available at any point to answer any questions and provide progress updates.

    Throughout the process, you can access support on Centra, our end-to-end planning system powered by Defaqto Engage, which integrates planning, risk profiling, research and suitability reports, all behind a single login - saving you time and money.

    If you’re looking to adopt Centra to support your advice process, a member of our Investment Services team will be in touch to discuss the benefits of the system.

    Our authorisations team have handled thousands of applications. If the FCA requires any additional information during the authorisation process, we can help you respond effectively – over the years we’ve encountered every situation, so there’s nothing we haven’t seen before.

    Our Professional Indemnity Insurance team will contact you to help arrange cover. Compliance First has negotiated preferential rates with a specialist provider, so you can be assured you’re dealing with people who understand your business. 

    You’ll be contacted by our Agencies team, who will begin the process of aligning your agencies to Compliance First, so you benefit from enhanced commission rates.

  • Spread your wings

    Whilst you spread your wings ready to make your journey, why not take a look at the range of services available through your membership?

    You may want to ask our team to start work on a new company website for your business. You can access our NextGen website service, which provides a professional web presence from as little as £10pm + VAT and features digital tools enabling your clients to access your services online.

    Give your marketing a revamp or refresh your business stationery by making use of the Marketing Store.

    Catch-up on the latest news in the Media Hub or relax, watch a webinar on the Adviser Media Player, or visit the events section of the website and see what we’ve got coming up near you.

    You may wish to arrange an on-site visit with your local SimplyBiz Investment Services representative to get training on Centra and, if needed, discuss how you can deliver a centralised investment proposition to your clients.

  • Making the journey

    Your journey to direct authorisation is almost complete, so let’s make sure you’re all set.

    To ensure you’re ready to go from day one, we’ll get you in contact with the key personnel who will help you get our support embedded into your business.

    Book your installation visit with your local compliance manager, who will look at your advice and operational processes and highlight how Compliance First’s regulatory services can help.

    A member of our relationship team will give you the guided tour of the Client website, so you know where to access the support you need.

  • Destination DA

    Once you’ve completed your journey in the promised land of direct authorisation with your application approved, it’s time to start making the most of it.

    You can now begin putting your Centra into use. Streamline your advice process by logging into one system for planning, risk profiling, research and suitability reports.

    And there’s plenty more to see once you’ve migrated...

    Want to diversify your client proposition and offer more? Check out our range of growth propositions, including our panel of preferred pensions transfer partners, to help you support your clients in this complex area, or SimplyBiz Mortgages, which is now the UK’s third largest mortgage club. You can now access our protection panel, SimplyProtect, to quickly and easily find the cover your clients need.

    Of course, you also have access to our industry-leading regulatory services - from on-site visits to our pensions technical helpdesks, file checks to bulletin updates – to ensure you have all the support you need as a directly authorised firm.


Nobody can match the breadth of expertise and support that we offer – and we keep winning awards to prove that! We have an expansive team all dedicated to supporting the firms that we serve. Going DA with Compliance First, doesn’t mean a reduction in service, more that you will have the freedom to choose, as and when you need, from our comprehensive range of enhanced support.

See how much you could save by moving to Compliance First.

Want to know more about how Compliance First can help your business?
Fill out the form below and a member of our team will be in touch soon.
Alternatively, call us direct on 0141 433 8234.