SMSF adviser logo
subscribe to our newsletter

Scam losses reinforce digital advice technology is becoming crucial for financial advisers

stuart alsop ifa
By Keeli Cambourne
18 April 2023 — 2 minute read

New data from the ACCC that Australians lost more than $3 billion in scams in 2022 should sound alarm bells in the financial advice industry about the need for securing client information, warns a digital technology provider.

Stuart Alsop, head of sales at intelliflo, a leading cloud-based technology platform for financial advisers, said digital advice is becoming a necessity in the financial advice sector as scams and cyber threats continue to increase.

“In the context of the financial advice sector, a lot of people would deem digital advice to be robo advice,” he said.

“But there can be hybrid digital advice where financial advisers can use technology as part of that digital advice journey, but clients can still speak to their financial adviser throughout the process.

“As someone once said, ‘technology won’t replace advisers but advisers that use technology will replace those that don’t’.”

Mr Alsop said there has been a reluctance from the independent financial advice sector to engage with technology, with many citing the age of their clients, especially those in the SMSF space, to not being conducive to accessing their information or correspondence through a digital platform.

“There is a common misconception from the financial advice industry that their clients are of a certain age bracket and they’re not tech-savvy and won’t use something like a client portal.”

“However, the statistics we have gathered from our UK business show that there are 30,000 users of the intelliflo solution and to date, there have been more than 390,000 log-ins. That's roughly one in every 150 UK adults using the intelliflo client portal”.

With the average age of those establishing self-manage funds decreasing, Mr Alsop said there is now a growing expectation that solutions like secure client portals are part of any business offering.

“There is more work that goes towards securing client data and that engagement is enhanced by client portals.”

“What we found in the UK data was that the user cohort that used it the most were the 60-65-year age bracket which completely debunks the myth that SMSF clients are not tech savvy,” he continued.

“Over the past few years everyone has had to move their life online and technology, and especially client portals, are not only for the young.

“If we think about the age bracket of clients that are opening up SMSF in Australia they expect a digital experience and to be able to log in to an app on their phone which will give them all the information they need about their super fund and portfolio more generally.

“We are full supporters of the financial advice industry using technology to advance their business model, and hybrid advice still needs the human connection – talking about problems and financial concerns but still using things like a client portal to engage and secure documents.”

Mr Alsop added that the UK data also revealed that around 20 per cent of clients who used client portals logged in on the weekend, and a further 20 per cent were logging after work hours.

“What that tells us is that financial advice is not a 9-5 business model anymore and technology means you can provide engagement and reporting at a portfolio level with access to documents at any time.”

Scam losses reinforce digital advice technology is becoming crucial for financial advisers
stuart alsop ifa
smsfadviser logo
You need to be a member to post comments. Become a member for free today!

Comments powered by CComment


Get the latest news and opinions delivered to your inbox each morning