No matter where you look, the world of wealth management is changing. Clients are developing new and different expectations for their relationships with financial advisors. New companies are rapidly inventing solutions to meet those expectations, including high-touch, digital approaches to communication that fall outside the way the advisor-client relationship has been managed in the past.
Combine new client expectations with a shift in engagement models and you’ve got a new era in financial services: an innovation-driven landscape populated with a new, technically-savvy generation. Executives know they need to adapt to keep up, but figuring out how to get started can be a serious roadblock. We’ve taken a close look at the changing landscape and created three steps you can use today to help your firm better understand and adapt to the culture of innovation that is reshaping the wealth management industry:
Keeping up with the latest social media platform or hottest technology hardly seems relevant for financial services executives. However, current trends in technology and culture have never before had such an impact on the industry. This is largely due to the change in client expectations around advising engagement models and services. Take mobile devices, for example. In the last 10 years, cell phones have gone from objects as large as bricks that could only make calls to elegant pieces of glass that allow consumers to order a pizza or manage their investments in just a few taps.
Staying abreast of the latest innovations across financial services doesn’t just mean taking note of a new, trendy mobile app. It means truly understanding the forces driving the need for that app and how it’s redefining how clients can seek financial advice.
Your firm’s partner relationships are crucial for creating a culture of innovation. When you select strategic partners for your ecosystem, consider evaluating them on their agility, available integrations, and proven ability to innovate and solve for problems across the financial services industry.
Pairing up with companies that are focused on driving innovations that are improving both the customer and advisor experience can only help in the long run. However, It’s important to ensure that these innovations can be mapped back to your firm’s specific needs and long term goals.
No matter what new problems or goals arise, you can seldom go wrong if you put the client first. Ask yourself: what needs, both met and unmet, do my clients have today? Then use what you know about current trends to project what they’ll be needing from their financial advisor in the future.
Keep in mind that no two clients are exactly alike, which means it’s difficult to fully predict what any given individual’s needs are or will be. Focus on broad demographic changes, such as the increase of women and millennial investors or the great wealth transfer but don’t lose sight of each client’s individual financial goals.
To dive deeper into our advice for industry leaders seeking to adapt to this new era, download our three-part series on the changing landscape of wealth management:
About the Author
Rohit Mahna is General Manager of Financial Services at Salesforce, leading the company’s strategy in the Wealth Management, Banking and Insurance sectors. Responsible for the product, marketing and overall go to market strategy, Mahna and his team oversee industry products and customer engagements for the Financial Services industry. He has been at Salesforce for over five years and was instrumental in the vision and development of Salesforce’s Financial Services Cloud, the company’s first industry-specific.
Mahna has over ten years of experience in the Financial Services space, previously leading global development of IBM’s Financial Services industry solutions for business analytics and overseeing the industry marketing team.