September 25, 2017
September 25, 2017 | Risk Pulse
Adviser Q&A: Navigating toward the advice practice of tomorrow
At Zurich, we’ve been partnering with financial advisers for many years to help develop resources and tools, and share best practice thinking to help ensure the continued success of the financial advice profession in Australia.
Our research whitepaper, BusinessFIT: Navigating toward the advice practice of tomorrow, is one of the most recent additions to our adviser resources and considers the fundamental characteristics of prosperous advice practices over the medium-long term, to 2020 and 2025.
It’s based on findings of a workshop we held with some of the industry’s most progressive and successful thought-leaders, where we explored the impact of changing consumer demographics and demands, increasing industry regulation and advancing technologies, and provided key recommendations for advisers to help future-proof their businesses.
Below we speak to one of our workshop thought-leaders – and one of Australia’s leading financial advisers – Tim Deamer, for his insights on the future of financial advice.
Hi Tim, are you able to share with us your personal advice philosophy?
My philosophy is based on building long term relationships with clients, as a trusted source of advice, to help them achieve their goals by managing uncertainty and providing financial peace of mind.
It’s about providing a fundamentally client-centric, holistic advisory service that offers technical experience in all areas of advice. This is all underpinned by clear communication and personal respect, integrity, friendly and professional advice, and a level of service that is second to none.
From your perspective in the industry, how do you see the role of an adviser changing over the next 5-8 years?
I think the role of the adviser will continue to evolve along the path of focusing on the client relationship and adding value. It will be about three main things:
- The fundamentals: goal-setting, prioritising and review; strategy evaluation and implementation; problem solving, guidance and helping clients manage uncertainty.
- Making the complex simple.
- Always thinking about the client experience.
The increasing benefits of technological advancements will enable significant improvements in the client experience and much greater clarity of the value of the advisory relationship.
What do you see as the biggest challenge for advisers in appealing to the changing type(s) of client?
The biggest challenge is probably just being complacent and believing that what has worked in the past will continue to work in the future. Disruption is definitely coming to the professions, including ours. It’s not if, it’s when, so we need to start taking action.
What’s your advice to advisers who see this change as a negative, or that it is not realistic?
Amongst my peer group, I think there is generally a positive view around the outcomes that improved technology might bring in the ability for advisers to better engage with their clients. There may be just some uncertainty about what this might look like or how it may be implemented.
For those advisers who see this as a negative at the moment, I would suggest taking an interest in the changing nature of client requirements, what clients’ value, and be open to making changes to your business practices – particularly how you can better deliver on the client experience.
Taking these considerations into account, where do you see your own practice in 5-8 years?
It’s certainly a fascinating time to be part of the financial advisory profession.
At Crosbie Wealth Management, we will continue to refine our client experience, focusing specifically on ideal clients, who we are of most value to. For us this is high income professionals, successful business owners, and self-funded investors.
All areas of our process improvement initiatives are focused on Client Centric Design. By continuing to deepen our knowledge of our clients’ particular goals, fears and aspirations, we will continue to develop and deliver the best possible solutions to meet their needs.
Accessibility to the dramatic improvements in technology will mean we can continually improve our client experience, helping to provide better solutions, pre-empt their concerns and be more active in providing and evaluating options, allowing for better engagement in their financial position, and a seamless connection between digital and human service/interaction. Ultimately, we hope this will increase the value we can provide to our clients via a trusted advisory relationship.
What technology are you excited about in the financial advice space?
It’s absolutely got to be the opportunities presented with artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning. There is tremendous scope for this type of technology to reduce the time and complexity in providing advice and significantly improve opportunities for our team to grow and in turn, improve client outcomes in areas such as cost reduction, investment outcomes, more agile strategies, more personalised solutions, fewer administrative errors, greater simplicity in understanding options and the ramifications of decisions.
These strategies, trends and technologies are explored in detail in Zurich’s whitepaper, BusinessFIT: Navigating toward the advice practice of tomorrow. To find out more speak to your Zurich BDM on 1800 252 650 or visit our website zurich.com.au/whitepaper to download your copy today.
This information is dated September 2017 and may be subject to change and does not take into account any personal objectives, financial situations or needs. You should consider these factors, the appropriateness of the information and the relevant Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) before making any decisions or recommendations.