Last summer, financial planner Pete Matthew took to Twitter to ask a fascinating question:
“Why is there no fluid, extensible, mobile-friendly, connected client fact-find app in the UK financial services space?”
At the time, it struck me as coming from a place partly of bemusement and partly of frustration.
Pete reminded me that advisers must have a whole internalised wish list of devices and applications – technology that would take care of the mundane, time-consuming (and sometimes boring!) tasks that they are forced to undertake every…single…day.
His tweet was re-shared into my timeline this week and my colleagues at Advicefront and I wondered whether advisers believed the world had moved on in the intervening six months – or whether they still felt they were not being served well by technology. So we asked!
Question: What piece of tech is missing from your profession?
Catherine Morgan, The Money Panel
The one piece of tech that would make my life easier would be something that would aid the onerous task of gathering information about an existing clients’ policies! If someone could devise a little robot or drone that collects the information from the client and company and whizzes it up into a little spreadsheet that would save me hours of work!
Victor Sacks, VS Associates
Real time updates on letters of authority, applications, underwriting etc. Hours saved in chasing for updates.
Darren Cook, Red Circle Financial Planning
I actually think you can do most things now, some better than others. The big win will be in making all the different bits talk to each other better for a more seamless process. I think we are into marginal improvements now, just doing things different or better, rather than anything that is genuinely new. Most things exist some are just not very good, yet!
Dominic Thomas, Solomons IFA
A MIFID2 cost widget that auto generates a table or graph for any document. A tool that cross-checks basic data between applications, such as an email address in back office/mailing/Outlook etc. A tool that takes the data from backoffice into CRM.
We also posed the question to some financial services product providers:
James Thurlow-Craig, spokesman for Mortgage Arrangers
There is a lack of standardisation in the format in which mortgages are processed and handled. It would be exponentially beneficial to have an online portal which standardises applications and allows them to all be submitted in a digital format.
Then being able to track applicants would save time, money and allow financial advisers to focus more on the core elements of a deal, putting lender turnaround times on a more level playing field.
Richard Hayes, CEO of Mojo Mortgages
The one-piece of tech that’s missing from our profession is the Lender API. Specifically, in the mortgage market, there’s been a noticeable absence of innovation in the last 20/30 years, that has left the mortgage industry lagging behind, particularly versus other financial verticals. In reality, the ability to get electronically-submitted mortgage applications without human intervention is distinctly lacking. The fintech within our space, that solves this problem first will have a huge competitive advantage in terms of delivering an unrivalled customer experience while also increasing efficiency.
So, there you have it! What would you add to this list?
At Advicefront, we’re trying to solve that perennial problem for financial planners: too much admin and paperwork, not enough time for clients. We’re doing this with easy-to-use, client-focused back office tech that removes onerous tasks like rekeying and that integrates seamlessly with your other favourite digital tools. Take a look at our Onboard technology.