With $2 trillion in assets transferring generations in the next five years, financial advisors need to address the needs of a younger generation of investors who demand digital, collaborative engagement
Led by the millennial wave, older generations also increasingly prefer more modern technology tools in how they communicate with advisors, balance their portfolios and more
SAN FRANCISCO, May 14, 2015–Salesforce [NYSE: CRM], the Customer Success Platform and world’s #1 CRM company, today released its “2015 Wealth Management for Connected Investors” report. Based on an online survey of more than 1,100 adults who currently have money invested (referred to as “investors”), the report found that not only are millennials (ages 18-34) putting pressure on financial advisors to use newer technologies in managing their money, but also Gen Xers’ (ages 35-54) and baby boomers’ (ages 55+) preferences are moving toward more modern financial tools, such as mobile portfolio management and web-based modeling.
Financial advisors today face disruption from robo-investor products, increased regulatory scrutiny and an overall demand for a more collaborative investing experience. Against this backdrop, more than $2 trillion in financial assets will shift hands between baby boomers and their Gen X and millennial offspring over the next five years,1 meaning advisors who leverage technology in working with their clients stand a better chance of capturing new investors benefiting from the great wealth transfer, as well as retaining existing ones.
The study was commissioned by Salesforce and conducted online by Harris Poll in April 2015. To download the “Salesforce 2015 Wealth Management for Connected Investors” report, click here.
“2015 Wealth Management for Connected Investors” Key Report Findings
Millennials overwhelmingly would choose advisors based on modern tools for financial planning, but Gen Xers and baby boomers are not far behind.
While it may not be a surprise that 89% of millennials find modern tools for financial planning (e.g., self-modeling, automatic portfolio re-balancing) important in selecting a financial advisor, Gen Xers (83%) and baby boomers (71%) are not far behind, likely driven by broader innovations in the consumer market.
77% of millennial investors state online advisor reviews are important vs. 53% of boomers.
Fee structures (93% for millennials; 91% for Gen Xers; 90% for baby boomers) and convenience (89% for millennials; 88% for Gen Xers; 86% for baby boomers) are universally important across the generations.
Currently, most American investors communicate with their advisors over the phone and in-person versus more modern channels such as email, texting or websites.
More than double the percentage of millennials make their investment decisions via email (32%) and websites (27%) compared to baby boomers (13% and 4%, respectively).
Only 32% of investors have access to a single, self-service website to see all current investments, and nearly half of investors keep their records in a folder, shoebox or other home storage option.
As millennials accrue more wealth, they look toward managing their investments in collaboration with advisors.
More than half (51%) of millennials who would like to change how they manage their investments would prefer managing their investments in collaboration with their advisors, despite only (32%) doing so today.
Nearly 30% of Gen Xers (28%) and baby boomers (27%) fully delegate management of investments to their financial advisors vs. 18% of millennials.
Millennials and Gen Xers report less trust in their advisors compared to their baby boomer counterparts.
Only half of millennials (49%) and Gen Xers (50%) trust that their advisors have their best interests as their top priority compared to 72% for baby boomers.
Additionally, only a third of millennials (33%) report that if they walked past their advisor on the street, they would be recognized, compared to 65% for baby boomers.
Comments on the News
"The modern financial advisor is under siege. It’s not just millennials who are demanding digital, collaborative technology from advisors, but also Gen Xers and boomers," said Simon Mulcahy, senior vice president, Financial Services Industry for Salesforce. “This new research shows that advisors who embrace modern modeling tools, websites with proactive investment advice and other new technologies stand a better chance of capturing today’s affluent investors.”
“The days of selling financial products are over – today’s investing consumer demands better management of their financial life, and advisers must innovate to answer that call. As consumers rely on technology for most of their daily activities, the time is now for financial advisers to embrace it in all of their work with and for clients,” said Mike Capelle, Chief Strategy Officer, United Capital.
1Source: Accenture, “The ‘Greater’ Wealth Transfer Report,” June 2012, http://www.accenture.com/us-en/Pages/insight-capitalizing-intergenerational-shift-wealth-capital-markets-summary.aspx
Download a full copy of the report here from the Salesforce Financial Services Team.
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This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll on behalf of Salesforce from April 27-29, 2015 among 2,015 adults ages 18 and older (1,189 have money invested). This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.
Salesforce, the Customer Success Platform and world’s #1 CRM company, empowers companies to connect with their customers in a whole new way. For more information about Salesforce (NYSE: CRM), visit: http://www.salesforce.com.
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Salesforce, the global CRM leader, empowers companies of every size and industry to digitally transform and create a 360° view of their customers. For more information about Salesforce (NYSE: CRM), visit: www.salesforce.com.
Any unreleased services or features referenced in this or other press releases or public statements are not currently available and may not be delivered on time or at all. Customers who purchase Salesforce applications should make their purchase decisions based upon features that are currently available. Salesforce has headquarters in San Francisco, with offices in Europe and Asia, and trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol "CRM." For more information please visit https://www.salesforce.com, or call 1-800-NO-SOFTWARE.