More and more people rely on technology to manage important matters, including their finances. In wealth management, investors and advisors alike are using technology to automate traditionally onerous processes, such as completing paperwork by hand, inputting the same client information across multiple forms, and ensuring adherence to regulatory requirements with each step. However, this does not mean that humans will be replaced by machines any time soon. A recent U.S. study of 2,000 respondents shows that more than 88 percent of investors want to see technology “complement” human advisors, not replace them. This is why we’re seeing an increase in the hybrid advisor model.
An ideal hybrid advisor model combines the low margin of error and efficiency of a machine with the communication and personal interaction of a human. Let’s take a closer look at how this can be achieved.
A Hybrid Advisor Model Relies on an All-In-One Multi-Function Back-Office
Offering a hybrid advisor model does not mean duplicating all systems. It means forking applications in such a way that back-office functions are available to professional users and self-serve investors without duplicating the systems or business processes. An all-in-one multi-function (aka unified) system also reduces the number of integration points, which optimizes all costs.
Hybrid Functionality Allows Investors and Advisors to be on the Same Page
With a unified back-office system, applications and functions are available on the front-end in formats that work for the investor and the advisor, so they’re looking at the same information in ways that speak to their respective needs. This empowers the investor by offering more engagement opportunities, such as on-demand access to their investment portfolio and goal tracking, without being bogged down by the more technical aspects of the investment process. Similarly, the advisor’s time is freed up due to automated administration and compliance, allowing them to focus on the more complex aspects of their role, such as financial planning, relationship building, and business development.
Complex Systems Don’t Need to Be Overhauled
So, how do you unify front- and back-office systems? APIs. They are the middleware that connects complex back-office systems with the front-office systems used by advisors and investors, standardizing applications’ user-interface with their actual functions.
As investors needs and expectations change over time, technology will play a greater role in helping wealth management firms respond swiftly and appropriately. Using a hybrid advisor model to lower costs, engage clients, and empower advisors will allow you to harness the best of both worlds — machine and human — and set up your firm for future innovation and growth.