Advisors have often worried about the effects of digital tools on their client relationships, but research from Cerulli finds that such tools drive advisor efficiency — as well as actually enhancing the way they interact with clients, while providing the digital experience that clients have come to expect in other parts of their lives.
In its report U.S. Retail Investor Advice Relationships 2018: Optimizing Engagement, Cerulli finds that digital tools “will increasingly serve as a complement to traditional advisors, enabling them to spend more time on client-facing activities.”
In fact, not only will digital tools free up advisors for more client time, they will “improve the way that advisors form relationships with their clients and scale their businesses,” the report adds. Retail investors expect online, all-the-time presence, but they also need what a live advisor can provide: personalization, insight and analysis.
“As many practices seek to build scale, it is important to remember that the human element of discovery is irreplaceable and that the best use of technology is to enable advisors to spend more time in client-facing activity,” says Scott Smith, director at Cerulli.