According to Accenture’s recent survey, c-level executives in wealth management affirmed they want to focus on responsible leadership and strategy, differentiated client experience, intelligent operations and technology, and empower talent and change, by 2025. 40 percent admit that nurturing a strong culture for change and embracing new ways of working are challenges.
In this survey, participants are expecting the following trends to affect the wealth management industry thus making their business more dynamic and offering greater value to their customers:
- Emergence of new technologies
- Environmental considerations
- Hyper personalisation
- Move to value generation with support from technology
- Personal data management
- Rise of platform ecosystems
Wealthtech as the accelerator for optimised customer engagement
According to Finextra, prior to the pandemic, the wealth management sector was facing multiple challenges, arising from digital disruption, evolving customer segments, and shifting competitive dynamics. The pandemic has merely acted as a reminder for the industry to revisit its priorities, to appropriately tackle these challenges, and it has been successful in doing so, by accelerating the adoption of technology for wealthtech.
Over the past year, client communication has been affected, however, with technology being a pivotal element to rejuvenation, peoples’ interaction is expected to change, forming a blend of remote and face to face, using a range of digital platforms and tools.
Personalisation is becoming a key priority with data management despite the paradox that might this create due to compliance issues for security and privacy. Technology can easily address these concerns.
According to Nasdaq, the industry has been historically slow in shifting from traditional infrastructure to more agile processes like microservices and self-service onboarding that would create a more customer-driven communication. However, today’s trend to use modern devices to communicate turns the desire to a necessity for many firms. Embracing change with the support of technology can lead to more profitable results.
What lies ahead for the investment management Industry
In the recent Mckinsey research, wealth managers “expect normal operations to resume by June 2021, assuming lower virus transmission rates, vaccine rollouts, and reduced capital markets volatility. Private banks have focused recent efforts on activating contingency cost reductions, enabling relationship managers to work remotely, and developing new products and digital functionalities. On the strategic agenda, organic growth remains a top priority, with cost reduction second (compared to eighth at the end of 2019).”
Private banking and wealth management firms are expected this year to see a change in their profits, their operational approach and agile distribution models, making them more responsive to customer needs. Which means that although the pandemic may have affected the industry, it has delivered a different dynamic to approach this change and more assets to invest.
Key points and takeaways
Given all this literature what should wealth management firms need to look out for this year and prepare for a more profitable and agile 2022?
- Improve value proposition through ESG strategies
This may include diversity and ESG practices. Identifying alternative plans to invest and to develop a long-term winning strategy based on specific trends and parameters can help firms overcome similar situations. The pandemic highlighted that many firms had to adjust to the market needs they trade in and be able to refresh quickly enough. In addition, new technology and new solutions allow investment managers to deliver strategic asset allocation and simultaneously incorporate investors’ ESG requirements, developing a significant competitive edge and secure long-term market presence in this growing space.
- Adopt omni-channel and personalised communication
The latest generation of HNWIs have an increasing familiarity using mobile devices and digital channels. To meet this market needs, firms need to focus on delivering hyper-personalisation so as to offer advice on setting and meeting financial goals. Technology provides wealth managers with an array of opportunities to make best and compliant use of customers data and spend more time enhancing their overall client service.
- Utilise self-service onboarding and agile technology
Hybrid advice and customised reports enable firms to differentiate and offer to customers an intuitive experience, empowering rapid response to market changes and customer requests.
- Invest in ground-breaking technology
IoT, augmented reality and AI will enhance virtual meetings, reporting, profiling, and best practices on client communication with automated functions where applicable, so as to deliver operating cost reduction and improved customer experience.
- Active presence through popular digital channels
Firms need to actively engage and produce content on social media since customers tend to visit advisors’ profiles and check out experience, investing more on digitising business profiles.
Technology will enable unique service delivery across wealth bands with bespoke counselling (family office), dedicated discretionary investments and advanced advisory investments.
Cloud technology will replace aging in-house infrastructure and firms can leverage shared services to reduce middle-office costs. Adopting advanced cloud security would enable privacy, security and meet compliance concerns.
The above points are not new to the industry; however, they have become paramount to compete effectively.
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