With the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had and continues to have, on people’s financial situations, it’s no wonder that the financial services industry has also been shaken. For organisations to continue to survive in this fast-changing and uncertain economic landscape, raising the bar for customer experience in financial services is key.
Even in the pre-pandemic world, the trend towards digital innovation in the wealth management industry was clear to see. The use of digital channels and robo-advisers has increased, and more and more organisations are turning to data and analytics to serve their clients – something that 61% of wealth managers see as being very important according to a recent Refinitiv report.
At Salesforce, we often hear from customers in the wealth management space that have concerns about keeping up with digital advancements. Salesforce solutions can help wealth managers build deeper relationships with their clients, put the client at the heart of everything they do, and create a best-in-class customer experience for financial services.
To examine the current challenges, and possibilities, the wealth management industry is facing in greater depth, we spoke to Formuesforvaltning, the largest privately-owned wealth management firm in Northern Europe, for one of the Salesforce Leading Through Change webinars.
Anders Zachrisson, head of business development and technology at Formuesforvaltning, explained how the wealth management sector has changed over the last 30 years, where historically complex products are changing and moving towards much lower price points. He described how the focus is shifting from the products themselves to being more results-based: what will the impact be on the client’s life?
“It's about changing our own culture,” he said. “An identity in the marketplace that complements our value proposition moving forward in the future”.
Part of that culture is making sure Formueforvaltning’s advisers are showcasing their best selves every day, which means, of course, making sure they have the sharpest and most knowledgeable advisers.
“That means we’re working a lot with adviser excellence programming, and scaling so we can quickly onboard talent into the business,” Anders said. “And that way we can get them in front of clients as quickly as possible”.
Clients’ expectations have changed, along with the way they want to be served, and wealth management firms need to pivot and deliver. It means goal-based financial planning and creating new customer experience by changing the way you engage with clients (more flexibility, new communication interfaces, and creating close relationships with them, for example), and changing your advisory model. This is something Formuesforvaltning has excelled at, as its chief marketing officer, Carl Sjostrom, explained.
“When we started our journey this year we wanted to create a hybrid customer experience, meaning that we wanted to have both traditional human advice and be able to build on an automated digital platform”.
To do that, Formueforvaltning’s needed a space where its advisers could collaborate with their customers in real time, and Salesforce was the ideal partner to help them build it. The app that was created is a planning app where both advisers and customers can enter financial wealth information, goals, and priorities, to create checklists to support Formues’ services.
Carl explained how using Trailhead has been a large part of Formuesforvaltning’s commitment towards creating the best customer experience, by using it as a knowledge platform to train the business’s advisers and supporting staff.
“At the end of the day we want to support them in order for them to be able to support the customer,” he said. “And Trailhead is where we build our training programmes so the advisers have them right at their fingertips.”
With Trailhead supporting Formuesforvaltning’s adviser training needs, even enabling advisers to use the app to access training during business processes, it’s easier for the organisation to look towards the future, and consider what further technology solutions might enhance the customer experience.
“We think that in a couple of years, we will be working a lot with AI and machine learning, in order to be able to get the next best step,” said Carl. With new modules in Trailhead constantly being enhanced, and the Salesforce platform as a whole helping Formuesforvaltning achieve its goals, the future of customer experience for wealth management clients looks brighter than ever.
Watch the webinar to find out more about how Salesforce can help the wealth management industry deliver for its clients, and why focussing on the customer experience is paramount in the current climate.