Beware disruption ‘hype’, FinPal warns advisers

While the financial advice industry is poised to benefit from automation, much of the life-changing technology for advisers is a way off, says fintech start-up FinPal.

Addressing delegates to the AIOFP conference on Hamilton Island, Stephen Handley, founder and managing director of financial advice software company FinPal, said advisers need to “do their homework” before embarking on costly technology integrations.

The seasoned IT professional said his experience in the technology industry has made him wise to companies who are more proficient at marketing than providing solutions. 

“Having lived through the dotcom bubble, most of the disruption talk is absolute hype,” Mr Handley said. “Technology is moving at breakneck speed … [but] I believe financial planners are best placed to service clients in the future.”


Advisers will likely benefit from technology applications allowing them to automate business processes, Mr Handley said, but he added some of these may not be as available as their founders and marketing staff might suggest. 

“We are still a few years away from the holy grail of fully automated advice process,” he said.

While open banking and open data initiatives are heading in the right direction, “vested interests” mean the progress has been slow for technology companies and financial services providers to truly collaborate via open APIs, he said.

“The philosophy of an ecosystem is starting to embed,” he said. “But it’s hard to know where some technology providers are at.”

FinPal recently announced an integration with fellow fintech start-up InvestFit and has been backed by Microsoft, entering into a commercial agreement with the tech giant. 

Beware disruption ‘hype’, FinPal warns advisers
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