Scaled advice was introduced to meet a market need: Australians who wanted a simple response to a particular financial need.
That market need has come to fruition. The 2016 Investment Trends’ Planning Software Benchmark report shows that 60% of the 385,000 statements of advice (SoA) produced during the previous year were for scaled advice.
The challenge for advice professionals in meeting this need is to deliver a simple advice experience for clients in line with profit objectives.
The temptation is to retro-fit the client experience for full advice to scaled advice. However, scaled advice demands a different approach to the client experience, including a change to parts of the process. Those who don’t recognise this will fail to meet client needs and expectations, and do so at a loss.
A prime example of this is around advice documentation. For example, using the same documents for scaled advice as for full advice might feel like a good short-cut early on, but it’s unlikely to provide clients with the right experience.
Someone seeking simple advice is unlikely to feel like they received a straight-forward experience if they’re issued with a statement of advice that doesn’t look or read like a straight-forward document. The terminology, syntax, charts and images in the advice documents need to echo what they saw on screen and the conversations they had with their adviser.
And it’s also inefficient. The introduction of scaled advice was designed to open up new growth opportunities for advice professionals. It’s certainly a profitable opportunity for delivering highly compliant personal advice at scale if the ingredients are right.
But scaled advice will only be sustainable if it is delivered through a combination of business strategy and process, technology, and with the client experience in mind.
Currently, for a typical client situation, the average time to produce a statement of advice is more than six hours. Clearly this isn’t feasible for an advice practice or group wanting to scale advice.
Of that six hours, almost half is spent in modelling projections, and researching and selecting products. The biggest area of opportunity for advice professionals is to automate as much of those processes as possible.
All of this is why we’ve worked with advisers and their clients to design, develop and deliver XPLAN Prime – our scaled advice solution. We wanted to help more Australians access advice and for our clients to be able to deliver it efficiently and profitably.
XPLAN Prime uses the underlying power of XPLAN’s client management, calculation, portfolio and research functionality, presented in a simple advice journey for real-time use.
For advice on a single goal, XPLAN Prime makes it possible to model projections, select an advice strategy, research and recommend a product in as little as 15 minutes.
Because that’s what scaled advice is meant to be.
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