How to apply

To get started, please read through the application requirements and guidance documents to ensure you meet all process requirements before applying. 

Read guidance notes

Application requirements

The APTITUDE programme is open to all professional pension scheme trustees, who meet the Pensions Regulator's (TPR) description of a professional trustee: "any person, whether or not incorporated, who acts as a trustee of the scheme in the course of the business of being a trustee”.

 

To hold accreditation, professional trustees will have to pass an initial application, which includes the following:
  • have successfully completed the latest Pensions Regulator’s Trustee Toolkit;
  • have passed the Pensions Management Institute’s Level 3 Certificate in Pension Trusteeship (CPT) Unit 1 - Professional Trusteeship - a multiple-choice exam of 60 questions, lasting 90 minutes. (Please note, learners already holding the Award In Pension Trusteeship (APT), will be exempt from sitting Unit 1, and it will count towards the final certificate as having been completed.);
  • have passed the Pensions Management Institute’s Level 3 Certificate in Pension Trusteeship (CPT) Unit 2 - Soft Skills - a multiple-choice exam of 60 questions, lasting 90 minutes;
  • comply with the ‘fit and proper’ requirements;
  • basic DBS check;
  • proof of credible and relevant employment history within the industry for the past 5 years;
  • references from two reputable figures within the industry, such as an existing accredited professional trustee, a pensions lawyer or a scheme actuary.
If you are successful in your application to become an Accredited Professional Trustee, to maintain your accredited status, you will be required, on an annual basis, to confirm:  
  • that you remain ‘fit and proper’ in accordance with TPR’s requirements;
  • that you continue to adhere to the ‘Standards for professional trustees of occupational pension schemes’ that were originally developed and established by the Professional Trustee Standards Working Group;
  • that you have completed any new or updated modules in TPR’s Trustee Toolkit;
  • proof of credible and relevant employment history within the industry for the past year;
  • that you have completed twenty-five hours’ relevant continuing professional development (CPD) in the previous year. At least fifteen hours of these must be structured CPD (‘structured’ means a formal event such as a conference, seminar or formal trustee training session); and in addition 
  • you must apply for a new basic Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check every three years and submit the certificate to us as part of that year’s annual renewal application.
     

Benefits 

PMI accredited professional trustees can enjoy: 

  • use of designatory letters PTPMI (Accred) 
  • professional recognition of the quality of your services 
  • a listing on APTITUDE's public directory 
  • a certificate of accreditation and an APTITUDE accreditation logo that you can use to promote your services 

  • In addition to your existing member benefits, all PMI accredited professional trustees will be invited to exclusive networking dinners and events post Covid-19. Other opportunities will soon become available, such as voluntary participation in our upcoming APTITUDE column in our Pensions Aspects magazine and our popular webinars.

    PMI also provides an online facility for recording and monitoring of Continuing Professional Development (CPD), which is a key requirement of ongoing accreditation as a professional trustee. This is done using our secure and robust CPD tool, accessible via your MY PMI member portal.  

Fees 

Level 3 Certificate in Pension Trusteeship (CPT) Unit 1 exam         £300*  
Level 3 Certificate in Pension Trusteeship (CPT) Unit 2 exam  £300* 
Accreditation fee  £500+VAT 
Annual renewal (PMI members**)   £150+VAT 
Annual renewal (non-members)   £300+VAT 


*Excluding resit fees if applicable  
**PMI Fellow and Associate members, who are also PMI accredited professional trustees, can enjoy 50% off Trustee Group membership at the next renewal cycle.
   

Process duration

All requirements of the programme must be met within six months of submitting your application.  

Employer information

PMI APTITUDE programme is an essential choice for all employers in the industry. For more than 40 years UK’s leading pension schemes and providers have relied on the PMI to provide the strategic insights they need to build and promote excellence within the industry, as well as sustaining competitive advantage. It is our mission to continue building credibility and raising standards with the trusted APTITUDE accreditation programme by offering:

  • over 40 years of pensions expertise, a long-standing track-record  
  • Ofqual regulated qualifications  
  • our experience in issuing FCA Statement of Professional Standing (SPS)  
  • professional development support from an independent body  
  • support from our dedicated membership, qualifications and compliance teams  
  • credibility in managing disciplinary processes  
  • PMI conferences, seminars, roundtables and other industry events  
  • extensive CPD opportunities  
  • networking  
  • mentoring  
  • dedication to developing soft skills  
  • automated and secure data processing

We also offer a number of customised benefits to firms accrediting all their professional trustees, such as co-branded certificates, in-house exams and joint press coverage.



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