There is no longer any question that digital is important in wealth management (it is!). The real question is, are firms doing all they can to support the future of advisory services? Initial findings from our Voice of the Advisor survey of North American financial advisors suggest that firms may be falling short on providing a digital experience that meets the rapidly changing needs of advisors and investors.

More can be done to support the digital advisor

A high 46 percent of advisors we surveyed believe firms can do more to support clients’ expectations, with 12 percent saying firms are flat out falling short. These advisors are feeling pressure from their clients. Some 41 percent of advisors say their clients are requesting tools the firm doesn’t offer—a trend we’re seeing skew heavily toward younger advisors.

Advisors want tools to make their investors’ lives easier

Half of the advisors we surveyed strongly support the provision of tools that help clients make their own investment decisions, but it’s worth mentioning this is more prominent amongst younger advisors (59 percent) versus older advisors (39 percent). What this indicates is that younger advisors don’t perceive self-investing tools as a threat, but more of a way to encourage collaboration between advisor and investor.

Are firms providing the right tools?

When institutions do provide tools, they lean towards providing tracking (64 percent), market research (58 percent) and calculators (57 percent). Higher-engagement tools, including technical analysis and portfolio comparison, lag behind at 32 percent. Worth noting, nearly one-third of advisors say they would consider switching firms if they don’t get sufficient digital support, which matches our Generation D research that finds 27 percent of investors would consider switching institutions for better digital tools.

In short, digital is critical in wealth management, and unquestionably, there are many opportunities for firms to provide more support to meet the needs of advisors and investors.

To learn more, check out my previous posts:

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