Financial advisers see robo-advice as a tool which could help them, according to global research.
The Financial Planning Standards Board has published a report into robo-advice which it will use to establish how the profession should address the issue.
To put together the report it carried out a consultation with advisers around the globe, from New Zealand to Canada, including the UK.
The report found that attitudes towards robo-advice have changed recently among the financial advice population.
It said: “In 2015, financial planners saw automated advice tools as both a threat and an opportunity, in nearly equal numbers.
“A year later, financial planners are less concerned about the disruptive potential of fully automated advice, and are talking about fintech more as a complement to their businesses: automated advice and fintech tools enable financial planners and financial advisers to increase practice efficiencies or cost-effectiveness; serve clients who are younger, lower-income and with fewer investable assets; and free financial planners to devote more time to activities that bring added value to clients.”
Financial advisers felt the use of robo-advice in their businesses could help them become more efficient and accurate, as well as helping to remove bias.
FPSB chief executive Noel Maye said: “When we started researching fintech in 2015, many certified financial planner (CFP) professionals saw automated advice tools as both a threat and an opportunity.
“A year later, financial planners are considering fintech to be a complement to their businesses.
“However, as the use of fintech tools grows, planners will need to clearly differentiate the value they provide over fully automated advice tools, so consumers understand what they’re getting from the automated tools and why life’s better when working with a CFP professional.”
He added that the FPSB will use its research to present a set of considerations for financial planning professional bodies and financial planners to develop positions and approaches to address fintech and the future of financial planning.
Mr Maye said: “FPSB’s goal is to encourage a global conversation within the financial planning community to ensure that, regardless of technological advances in, and automation of, advice models, consumers will continue to have access to financial advice that is in their best interests from humans (or technology) competent to provide that advice in an ethical manner.”
The FPSB is a global standards-setting body for financial planning and owner of the international Certified Financial Planner certification programme.
Its member organisation in the UK is the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment.