Ross Laurie, CEO, Visible Capital, heralds a warning to adviser businesses to take a leap forward in automating their processes in order to improve their client service proposition in these days of ‘uberisation’
There’s no doubt our lives have been rapidly digitised under lockdown. In the course of a run of the mill day, we regularly leap between a dozen or more different platforms to conduct our work and social lives. These days, for many of us, a working from home day may very well have been going something like this …
8.00am Tesco delivery arrives after ordering online
8.30am WFH day starts with logging onto Slack to message colleagues and set up Microsoft Teams meetings
9.00am Help kids to log onto Mathletics for home schooling
9.10am Amazon delivery of printer ink cartridges
9.30am Whatsapp video consultation with vet for dog’s infected eye
10.00am Log into Monzo banking app to check balance and pay bills
12 noon Feeling optimistic – use booking.com to put staycation in the diary
1pm Order in pizza for lunch from Deliveroo
2pm Dropbox spreadsheet to colleague and share documents on google suite with team
4pm GoToMeetings chat with financial adviser who has analysed my recent financial data and has identified a way to boost my pension
6pm It’s a Friday – drinks with friends on zoom – all arranged on social media
Ironically perhaps, when there are few reasons these days to jump in a taxi – the word being bandied around for describing the digitisation of our lives is “uberisation”. Or as the Cambridge Dictionary defines it “to change the market for a service by introducing a different way of buying it or using it, especially using mobile technology”.
In our uberised world, we are all more comfortable than ever before with the way markets have changed and with using the technology that drives them. According to Mastercard’s Global State of Pay report carried out across 14 different countries, 53% of the world’s population is using banking apps more than they were before the pandemic.
Mastercard research also showed that people in the UK are now “more likely to have a banking app than a social media app on their mobile phone. Almost three in five (59%) of Brits say they have a mobile banking app, compared to half (50%) who have social media apps.”
And interestingly, particularly for wealth management professionals whose client demographic is likely to be predominantly over 50, the Mastercard research, reported on finextra.com, showed that “26% of over 65 year olds are using their mobile phones to make payments and that 42% would consider using other types of digital payments due to their experience with using their banking app during COVID-19.”
This is important for our industry. The clients with whom financial services professionals are dealing with each day, whatever their age, are likely to be increasingly uberised. They are digital savvy and that will affect their expectations of the service they expect from their adviser.
They expect accessibility, convenience, efficiency and speed from their adviser because that’s what they’re used to getting from the digital platforms they are using across their professional and social lives.
And we know, from the business we are doing with them, that financial advisers throughout the UK are beginning to recognise this. Visible Capital’s complementary technology for the advice market uses intelligent automation to speed up the onboarding process, provides a friction-free customer experience and ensures that advisers continue to have access to crucial customer insights so that they can build strong and profitable relationships with their clients.
And when customers get the kind of swift and seamless service from their financial adviser that they are used to getting in all other areas of their uberised world, they remain loyal and profitable.
Baroness Martha Lane Fox, interviewed on BBC Radio 4 recently, talked about the way that lockdowns would simply not have been possible without the internet and its associated technologies. Most of us have stepped up our dependence on technology and appreciated its many conveniences. There’s no going back and financial advisers who want to keep ahead of their competition will increasingly embrace technology to ensure they meet and exceed their customers’ expectations.
Interestingly as Martha Lane Fox wrapped up her interview she said she was off to vote in the House of Lords – on her mobile. Uberisation indeed.