Technology means businesses can focus on their clients rather than having to worry about their files, security and organising their day-to-day processes. Technology is pivotal, but it also has long term benefits like the continual flow of repeat business resulting in a constant generation of revenue. Our Client Portal has provided advantages to our clients, they have seen an increase in repeat business by over 25%. We saw over 50,000 client FactFinds sent through 360 Lifecycle in 2020.
How crucial is it for financial advice businesses to use technology to interact with clients?
Technology makes it easy for businesses to keep engaged with clients, eliminating the need for face-to-face meetings. Technology can enhance the sales and advice process and help increase written business. Our end to end practice management system, 360 Lifecycle, means advisers can access files shared securely within minutes.
Our FactFind helps clients purchase their homes and secure their financial futures allowing clients to have their own sales journey. Clients have the flexibility of uploading their own data and they can fulfil requests from advisers to speed up the process. Advisers can source multiple products on mortgages, protection and GI all in one place making the advice process seamless.
How does technology financially benefit businesses long term?
Technology will continue to bring long-term improvements to businesses, allowing advisers to manage their business, improve efficiencies and productivity. We offer a full end to end client facing FactFind solution for advisers to send to their clients securely, making the process of gathering client information easy, this allows advisers to save 45 to 90 minutes of data entry per sales journey. With this spare time businesses can onboard new clients resulting in more revenue.
Clients have seen how quickly advisers can progress their application without having to go into an office to meet an adviser. They do not have time to spend a few hours meeting a broker plus travelling time. Clients will still expect the same level of speed and efficiency in the future. Financial advice businesses need to onboard technology to help their business and clients prosper.
As we can now start to envision the future, the benefits that the digital world offers will not be forgotten. The changes the past year has brought upon the industry are becoming permanent, which consists of the desire for a sleek digital mortgage, insurance and GI process. Businesses need to realise the advantages from this modernised world so they can continue to see how prosperous technology is for them and to help serve their clients.
Should businesses be worried about using technology?
Technology is forever going to be in the financial services industry and be used to grow businesses and their revenues, employees need to be informed of the benefits technology can have upon the business as well as their job processes. They need to be aware of how much it can impact them with increased productivity and a shorter, quicker more efficient mortgage, protection and GI process.
A CRM system can often seem like a time-consuming option that is expensive and too complex. Businesses should not fear this, they should only be anxious about their competitors adopting technology before they do. To subdue this fear, businesses need to be aware a CRM system like 360 Lifecycle, has a smooth onboarding process with a dedicated team of people to help them every step of the way. 360 Lifecycle is here to make your life easier and future proof your business.
A CRM should be the single point of truth in terms of your data, so it is held securely. You can use it for reporting, marketing to clients and reconciling payments all through the sales journey. All data is recorded in a central area which you can report on or query for various communication methods or business processes.
Do you believe the pandemic has changed the way businesses view technology?
The pandemic has changed the way businesses view technology, those that have not adapted have seen their clients at risk of drying up as they favour tech-savvy competitors. The pandemic left businesses who did not adopt behind, as they depend on seeing their clients face-to-face and use spreadsheets to manage business and securely store important information. The pandemic made this hard work and businesses either had to onboard or see their clients go elsewhere.
Those that were initially scared of using tech and have now taken technology onboard would not look back, they can see the value it has brought upon their business. Using 360 Lifecycle is now enabling these businesses to save time so they can take on new clients which ultimately increases their revenue. Advisers can interact with clients easier using our Client Portal which now has over 115,000 users. They know all their data is safe and securely stored within our cloud-based system, reducing data loss which they can access anywhere at any time that suits them.
How do you think technology will impact the financial services market in 18 months?
Most businesses have been adjusting to technology accordingly so they can reap the same benefits as they know it is here to stay. However, there are tough questions about the impact it will have on the financial services industry over the next 18 months. We are realising how rapidly technology is changing and playing catch-up is never a good option in this industry. We are taking these changes onboard as we welcome feedback from over 6,000 users with over 2,000 brands. We understand the requirements of advisers and their businesses and work with other tech companies to build a seamless process.
We are regularly enhancing our system, so we are more knowledgeable about our clients’ needs enabling them to always stay up to date. Through feedback, we were made aware that EIDV and AML was a requirement by many businesses. We took this on board, and we have selected a partner, this is due to launch in summer 2021. This upcoming integration will allow businesses to record and electronically identify clients. The integration will also help to prove a client resides at their permanent address, to investigate any PEP’s and sanctions and to identify if they are on the electoral register.
How do you know which is the right technology for your business?
Businesses need to consider if their current technology or method of working is right for them. When businesses are used to a certain way of conducting business, it can be hard to envision ways to improve. Businesses need to consider how their processes could be made more straightforward, as the right technology could benefit them and their clients. Businesses must consider what they need, if interacting with clients is a struggle or storing data.
A business needs to know they are going to be supported, that is why we provide everything to run a successful business. We allow businesses to keep on track of technological enhancements by providing release notes to all clients to give them updates on our exciting new developments. Account Managers engage with all clients to ensure they have understood any new improvements. 360 is an agnostic system that works with various strategic partners to build one seamless sales journey whether that be sourcing, conveyancing or EIDV. Businesses do not need to use other systems; they have access to everything in one platform to create a seamless journey. 360 Dotnet provides a consultative approach when working with businesses to understand how they work and how these can be adapted through the embedding of technology to provide more efficient processes.
*Ozgur Unlu is Managing Director of technology firm 360 Dotnet