How Technology is Creating a New Generation of Financial Advisors
For years technology has been disrupting industries from transportation to accommodation to food delivery and commerce. There are plenty of way in which technology can be both a blessing and a curse, but whether you like it or not, it does play a big role in our daily lives, and there’s no way to ‘opt out’ of it unless you plan on living on a remote island, away from modern civilization for the rest of your life.
The ‘FlexGen’ Advisors
Most businesses are realizing the true potential of technology and how it can help them get ahead of the competition in their respective industries. Among these are financial advisors and planners who have not only accepted technology, but actually used it as an asset to acquire clients, provide better services and grow their businesses more efficiently.
Technology represents a new wave of change in the world of businesses, and companies that embrace this change and learn to evolve with it are the ones that get ahead in the competition. Those who don’t change, almost always get left behind – that’s just how the industry works.
The financial and investment planning industry was one of the first ones to embrace technology and today its investors and clients are far more tech savvy than any of the previous generations. To meet the changing demands of these clients, the industry has given birth to a new generation of financial advisors called the ‘FlexGen advisors’ who bringing more flexibility into the financial systems and using the latest technological tools to better serve their investors.
A recent study by Fidelity Advisor Community and eMoney, called the ‘FlexGen study’, surveyed over 450 participants to show that advisors must adopt technology and flexibility in financial proccesses in order to stay ahead of the curve.
eMoney CEO Ed O’Brien explained that financial advisors are challenging conventions and tackling wealth management through a more collaborative process with their investors, and this forward thinking has helped in building a more honest and trustworthy relationship between advisor and client. Here are three ways that technology is disrupting the financial sector and how advisors are using it to their advantage.
Thinking of Technology as An Investment
Technology has become the most important tool to stay competitive in any industry today. Financial advisors who see technology as an investment instead of an expense have an edge in advising clients.
Since most investors are starting to trust technology more than humans, it makes sense to use it in an industry that contains a lot of risk and mistrust, to give clients a peace of mind. This way, advisors are able to boost client retention, hence increasing their profits. Technology has created a clearer path for communication between investors and advisors, allowing for better collaboration and goal-based planning.
Planning for the Future
With the advancement in financial advisory industry, the focus is no longer just on the client sitting on the other side of the table. Advisors are switching up their business models to incorporate future generation in the wealth management and planning process, which will eventually open doors for more growth and development opportunities.
One Size Doesn’t Fit All
In traditional financial planning, a client meets with the advisor for the first time and they have a thorough discussion about incomes, expenses and assets. After the first appointment, the advisor crunches the numbers and comes up with the amount you’ll need at the time of retirement and how much you need to contribute every month to meet the goal, followed by check-ins every 6 or 12 months. But in today’s world of interconnectedness, this outdated business model is being phased out.
With more women, minorities and younger generations entering the financial market, advisors need to adapt their business models to cater to varying needs of their clients. This may include sending regular reports to the clients and using video conferencing, texting and social media tools to communicate with them. This fosters a more personal relationship which eventually leads to better client retention.
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