The demographics of wealth management are changing as women and millennials exert more independence over their financial management strategies.
Over the last two decades there’s been a surge of female professionals in the workforce driving financial growth. Recent research conducted in summer 2015 found that wealth managers expect to see women make up 38% of their client base in two years, up from just 33% today. Millennials are also emerging as top growth prospects as they take advantage of an increasing concentration of high-paying jobs. But it’s more than just job opportunity. A great wealth transfer of $2 trillion in assets is expected to be transferred in the next five years and with millennials inheriting a considerable portion, they will have to learn how to manage sizable wealth for the first time in masses.
Despite the rise in wealth among women and millennials, wealth managers have been slow to accommodate the unique needs of these groups. The decision to change wealth managers, made by both women and millennials after inheriting, was among one of the more common reasons for losing clients. Investors are now gravitating toward the simple-to-use and automated investing technologies of robo-advising, which has led to new entrants aggressively courting this market. In fact, speciality robo-advisor firms for women have already launched in an effort to provide more tailored advice to this group of investors. Advisors are missing an important opportunity to not only compete with similar technologies but also develop lasting relationships with millennials and high earning females in their clients’ family networks.
Goal planning, customized interactions and collaborative advising are great ways for wealth managers to start building strong relationships with these groups. These new clients value a tailored approach that resonates with their unique needs, communication methods and attitudes toward financial planning. With the right technology and a client-centric approach, advisors can fight back against new competition and earn the trust of both millennials and women.
Rohit Mahna is the VP and GM of Financial Services, Salesforce.