In recent years, we have seen Wealth Management clients increasingly looking for holistic offerings beyond managing their investments, a deeper relationship with their relationship manager, and a seamless and personalized experience underpinned by trust.
Building a fully rounded, on-demand and integrated customer service has always been the North Star of private banks. To deliver the holistic experience their customers are looking for, Wealth Management firms need to make fundamental changes, including embracing a new business model and leveraging a combination of data, analytics, and Artificial Intelligence (AI) to shape future-proof and relevant offerings.
Going beyond investment services
A current misconception about services in the Wealth Management industry is that they only focus on providing generic portfolio management capabilities, aiming at achieving the best possible rate of return uncorrelated from non-economic sensibilities. While performance remains a core topic of discussion, returns have to come from the right type of investments that offer an emotional and social connection. The explosive growth of environmental, social and governance (ESG) and socially responsible investing (SRI) products is of both industry and personal importance as investors become more socially conscious and want to see the impact they can have on the real economy.
Clients are looking for a personalized and holistic offering aligned with their financial and non-financial goals
Above all financial considerations, investors are expecting their advisors to support them in the “moments that matter” by demonstrating a sound and personalized understanding of their needs. These “moments” are critical life events and personal choices, ranging from changing job to helping set aside sufficient funds to best protect a child with special needs.
To be successful in accompanying their clients on these journeys, Wealth Management firms need to propose not only traditional investment management services, but also a holistic service offering, encompassing a wide range of products like insurance and risk management, tax and estate planning, as well as family office and other conciergerie types of services.
Technology enables Wealth Management firms to do this at scale by leveraging data to develop the most comprehensive view of a client. With this critical and foundational element in place, the relationship manager can easily recommend products, strategies, and actions tailored to his/her client’s needs.
Trust remains at the heart of the relationship
While the breadth of the offering and digital capabilities are important elements, financial advisors still play the central role in the relationship, sometimes intervening as investment strategists and financial services concierges but also life coaches and family therapists.
Technology empowers advisors but trust remains the cornerstone of the relationship
Trust enables them to understand individuals rather than to service them and brings them into an advisory situation where their recommendations resonate with the client’s personal beliefs. To be able to define what constitutes sound advice, we need to understand its key components. According to Accenture’s 2021 Wealth Management consumer report: The new state of advice , it is the function of perspective plus client engagement to the power of the relationship.
Empower advisors using technology
Technology is the driver for orchestrating a service experience that improves customer sentiments and brand loyalty. Digital signals, or data points, can be used to help advisors understand and predict key triggers for engaging with their clients, in other words, identifying the moments that matter. For the client, this is experienced as an affirmation that their advisor knows, values and cares about them. For the firm, it enables the flexible execution of a robust digital and human engagement model while at the same time having a scalable solution that can bend the cost curve exponentially.
With the right set of digital tools and technologies at their disposal, Wealth Management firms also need to seek out an ecosystem of partners to enhance what these tools can do to serve their clients in the best way.
In conclusion, we can safely state that Wealth Management firms need to bring three key elements together to provide a delightful client experience: a personal engagement model, a technology-powered offering, and a relationship of trust.