Aegon  

Aegon says 'a lot to do' as it pledges to invest in platform

Aegon says 'a lot to do' as it pledges to invest in platform

Aegon UK's chief executive has said there is "a lot to do" as he promised to continuing to invest in the company's adviser platform to improve the digital front end and user experience.

Mike Holliday-Williams told FTAdviser that while many improvements had been made to the Aegon platform over the past couple of years, there was still “some way to go”.

He said the provider had listened to advisers’ concerns about the platform and has added functions such as drip feed drawdown and a DFM service.

But he said that it is now looking to invest more in the front end experience.

Holliday-Williams said: “We have got a project looking at the whole digital front end and the user experience for advisers but that will take time for us to take to market. 

“But these are the digital journeys and the servicing experience that we're continuing to invest in. 

"It is still a big part but we've done a lot this year and worked quite hard with the distributors [...] so I'm happy with the progress that we've made.

“I always imagine we've got so much to do yet, but we have got the investment to do that and I think it's really important that we continue on that journey.

"These improvements are being seen by the increase in advisers using the platform."

Holliday-Williams said this increase in advisers using the Aegon platform included existing advisers who were using it for a greater proportion of their business and new advisers who had previously not used it at all.

Last month, Aegon told FTAdviser that 100 advice firms joined in the past year and it currently has about 1,000 firms that are actively managed out of about 6,000 advice firms which have assets on the platform.

Holliday-Williams admitted these advisers did have issues with the platform at times and when changes are made but said the firm has a pot of investment to fix any issues which may arise.

He said: “Listening to advisers, there's always more to be done and we're completely committed to doing that. We'll prioritise the kind of changes that we make, based on the feedback that they're giving us.”

As part of it results for the second quarter of 2021 yesterday (August 12), the provider reported its platform business doubled its net deposits compared with the same quarter last year to £1bn, driven by its workplace arm. 

In addition, assets under administration in the UK reached £200bn for the first time.

amy.austin@ft.com

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