Smartphones and their use for retirement funds
Despite the recent launch of the latest Apple iPhone, Samsung Galaxy 10 and other tech giants latest gadgets, smartphone sales worldwide are on the decline. The market seems to be nearing saturation point and this phenomenon is seen across all brands.
However, a few pockets of potential growth still remains open, most significantly in Sub-Saharan Africa.
This is a market the retirement industry can still explore in its quest to better communicate with and educate retirement fund members.
For many people, they’ve become inextricably intertwined with their smartphones and for most, it’s the 1st thing you check when waking up in the morning as well as the last thing you interact with before you go to sleep.
The most effective way is to communicate with people using the devices they already use on a daily basis and smartphones creates exactly that opportunity.
There are several ways in which this can be done:
Creating a bespoke App for a specific employer allowing secure member access to a variety of functions like updating personal information, beneficiary nominations, retirement fund and medical aid information, etc.
Apps can be written in such a way as to interface with other apps and act as a central portal to access the different areas.
Electronic member newsletters and benefit booklets
Fund and company Newsletters as well as member information booklets and many more can be distributed through this portal. The content does not have to be data-heavy and can be facilitated via online readers instead of having to download PDF files. The latter is of course still available, should the user wish to do so.
Fund explanatory and “How to…” Videos
Simple, white-board type explanatory videos showing the workings and benefits of the fund are very effective in bringing the concept across. Videos can also have a voice-track in any of the different languages, thus enhancing understanding even more amongst members who have English as a second language.
Video technology is overtaking print rapidly in its effectiveness in delivering the message – see also the recent article “Multi-media video tops printed material”
The same technology can also be used in a series of “How to…” videos, each detailing the required steps for completing a claim, beneficiary nomination forms, checking your retirement or medical scheme benefits and many, many more.
The use of simple, illustrated infographics to illustrate the workings of the range of employee benefits is also an extremely effective way of communication.
Communication in general
Smartphones can also be used in general communication to members, nomination of trustees, voting, member surveys and polls, etc.
Using an accessible platform like a smartphone as a conduit or portal to access the range of employee benefits is a cost-effective way to engage with members and increase their knowledge and understanding of the benefits offered to them by the organisation.