Lizette Vorster, Momentum Head of Product Integration
During the COVID-19 pandemic, all industries and sectors had to throw caution to the wind and dive deep into digital technology to ensure business continuity. While the pandemic has slowed, the shift to digital has not.
An industry with a long history of just face-to-face interaction, financial services also had to change their business model. “Now more than ever, financial services providers (FSPs) must adapt and innovate to provide clients with the digital experience they demand in a fast-paced environment. They need to switch and reframe,” says Lizette Vorster, Momentum Head of Product Integration.
An internet search delivers a wealth of financial advice-related information videos, infographics and articles, but Vorster maintains these cannot replace advice from an accredited financial adviser.
That doesn’t mean financial advisers cannot benefit from adopting and using digital tools to enhance the financial advice process. In fact, Vorster says that doing so will free up financial advisers’ time to do what they do best: engage meaningfully with their clients.
“Adopting technological strategies is also becoming especially important if financial advisers want to attract younger clients,” says Vorster. According to the Momentum Unisa Science of Success Insights Report, more than 90% of this segment believe digital interactions and experiences can strengthen their relationships with companies. Financial advisers can leverage technology to streamline specific processes for their and their client’s benefit. Examples of such digital capabilities are software that enables clients to sign a document electronically (no need to drive to a client to obtain a signature), a dedicated digital workspace, medical underwriting and quoting for long-term insurance within seconds using a mobile app, and customised and personalised communication campaigns for clients based on their unique needs.
Many financial advisers’ “books” are ageing with Traditionalists and Baby Boomers as their main clients. In countries like the United States, a veritable flood of generational wealth is set to wash over the next generation (i.e., Millennials) thanks to Baby Boomer prosperity. These youngsters are not only tech-savvy but already concerned about, among other issues, the cost of living.
With a global shift in financial advice away from a transaction-focused to an advice-focused approach, financial advisers must remain connected to their clients. Those who can, over and above, also operate digitally and connect with younger customers in a way they are comfortable with, will gain a new generation of clients.
Vorster says that when it comes to the opportunity that digital capabilities in financial services present, the best attitude is to embrace it to accelerate your momentum.