Jenny Nicholls joined MPA as a receptionist in May 2014. A recent graduate, Jenny was looking for her first job after university and was working part time in a pub to earn money.

Less than a year into her time at MPA, Jenny moved into the administration team to support them while they were short-staffed and has never looked back.

Within 12 months Jenny was undertaking a programme of professional development and embarking on her CF1 and LP2 exams, to develop a greater understanding of the UK financial services industry, including regulation, ethics and the range of products and solutions available to clients.

She stayed on in the administration team for five years, supporting advisors and other paraplanners. During that time, Jenny completed level 6 of the Chartered Industry of Insurance (CII) Diploma in Regulated Financial Planning in July 2020 and earned her next promotion with MPA to become a senior administrator

In March 2021, one of the paraplanning team retired and Jenny was encouraged to apply for the role of Paraplanner, helping to write reports for Independent Financial Advisers (IFAs), undertaking research and generating suitability reports. Going up against external candidates, she was thrilled, if a little surprised when she was offered the job,

Jenny Nicholls adds: “I went to university late and graduated aged 27 with a degree in Criminology. I never set out to be in financial services, I just kind of fell into it and really enjoyed it as soon as I got involved. It is really interesting to see how people have achieved wealth and how they got to the point where they have finances to invest.”

“MPA has really supported and encouraged me to undertake professional development and achieve CII accreditations. The studying element is a lot, as there is extra work in evenings and weekends on top of the day job. Also, it didn’t come naturally as it was all new in the beginning but achieving the diploma and being selected as paraplanner among external candidates, has been an absolute career highlight, making it all worthwhile.

Another highlight of working at MPA was taking part in the team’s Hadrian’s Wall Charity Walk. The MPA team walked 100 miles in a week, averaging 15-20 miles per day, to raise money for the Henley in Arden Hub at the local school, which runs daily activities for all age groups.

Jenny explains: “It was a brilliant team building activity and a good bonding exercise, as we trained in our own time for four months meeting weekly for weekend practice walks from 5 to 20 miles. It really built a sense of team and was great to support a charity local to our head office.”

Looking to the future, Jenny is happy where her career at MPA has taken her to date and has no plans to become an adviser anytime soon, she explains: “I enjoy the process up to the point of where an adviser does their part. I do hope to continue with professional development qualifications in paraplanning, keep building up knowledge and working with the MPA team. Perhaps one day I might consider specialising in a particular area such as pensions, but for the moment I’m very happy doing what I’m doing for a while.”

For more details about opportunities at MPA visit our careers page.


Jenny Nicholls