Prudential  

Digital tools must focus on adviser and client

Digital tools must focus on adviser and client

Automation in the advice market must accommodate advisers' as well as clients' needs if it is to be a success, according to Prudential. 

Speaking at the Robo Investing conference in London today (September 10) Dean Butler, head of digital innovation at Prudential, said automated services must be tailored to both the client and adviser in order to give the best advice - something he said had not always been achieved in the market. 

He said: "It’s very fair to say that automation isn’t just exclusivity anymore to the customer point of view.

"We’ve gone many years seeing many robos who have solely digitised the customer experience and haven’t truly focused on what would an adviser experience look like.

"But as they’ve built these tools they have quickly acknowledged that the customer tool they have built actually can be passed over to an adviser and you’ve got a tool that both users can use." 

Mr Butler's comments were made in response to a question from Alois Pirker, research director of wealth management at Aite Group, asking what adviser platforms and client portals needed to do to "speak the same language" and reach the same conclusions for customers. 

Mr Butler said providers should be looking at what can be re-used from the digital propositions built for clients and those built for advisers, agreeing they should be willing to re-think the adviser desktop. 

He said: "I can build something for an adviser that will take them through a full end-to-end advice process, at the end it will create a suitability report and the adviser knows exactly what they are looking at and they know how to understand certain graphs and the terminology used. 

"Now that isn’t necessarily going to work for a customer because you’re going to have a much richer engaging user interface - but you’ve got the building blocks that already sit there to give end-to-end advice.

"It is about having the correct and full ecosystem to allow true omnichannel advice where a customer can one day log on, see the body of their portfolio, potentially receive a nudge from which they might want to arrange a conversation with an adviser and when the adviser logs on they are able to see the exact same detail that the customer has seen and there is a continuous smooth engagement model." 

rachel.mortimer@ft.com 

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