The Hybrid Wealth Business: Focus on Technology
Modern technology has enabled self-service wealth management where end-customers can investigate, learn and make decisions about their financial situation. This marks the beginning of the democratization of the industry, where seamless guidance through the intricacies of personal finances is available for those who would not previously have the privilege of using the services of a financial advisor. However, combining technological advancements and the human-led service of a financial advisor in many cases leads to a better experience. This effect is achieved through empowering an expert with the tools that help them improve the quality and content of their work to levels previously unachievable. At Kidbrooke, we provide technology enabling financial advisors to build trust and truly future-proof their business models without losing the human connection. In this article, we describe two important elements of the customer experience that a hybrid model could add to any modern physical advisor’s arsenal:
Outside In: Iterate to Innovate
New technology is often implemented by large companies to solve specific problems. Once the initial purpose has been achieved, the technology becomes part of the business as usual or “BAU” infrastructure. But instead of relegating a new functionality to the “new normal” category, it is useful to consider it as a catalyst for change – both in external, customer facing projects and in internal, IT development planning. Skandia, Sweden’s largest insurance company, implemented OutRank to offer customers a superior tool to better understand their pensions and investments. Working together with the Kidbrooke team, the Skandia executives saw the positive impact that a user-friendly customer interface had on sales as well as customer retention.
ESG: Energize your investment portfolio
The COP26 conference in Glasgow may be over, but the themes discussed there will continue to be topics of concern for people, especially in the context of long-term investments in company stocks and mutual funds. There are so many issues to be considered: the environmental, particularly the response to climate change; the social, how companies treat their employees, suppliers and customers; and governance, how companies manage themselves as responsible corporate entities. With all of these facets of ESG, the subject of sustainability can feel overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. With the right tools, financial advisors can help their customers easily understand the complexity of the sustainability issues and take action based on that knowledge.
Silver linings and green shoots: a client lifecycle approach to financial planning
Now that the world is emerging from the Covid 19 pandemic, people will be making decisions on their lifestyle choices, careers, housing, education and eventual retirement. A year of working from home, for those who are not key workers, has led some individuals to contemplate a new kind of life, with better work-life balance, among other objectives. Pundits have published articles about “the future of work” and related topics. Yet these decisions must be made in the context of holistic financial planning so that the rewards, risks and tradeoffs can be fully understood. The ability to see complex financial scenarios including the “known unknowns” is usually the subject of actuaries and portfolio managers; ordinary people and the financial professionals who advise them need tools to understand their finances quickly and simply.