Transparency Taskforce holds Financial Planning Symposium

The Transparency Taskforce, which seeks a fair deal for consumers of financial services, held a symposium in London on Thursday 16 January – to examine fairness, transparency and pricing in the financial planning sector.  

Speaking at the event, Kay Ingram, Director of Public Policy at national financial planning group LEBC, said: “Price alone does not equate to value. As well as the monetary cost of the service, many consumers have constraints on their time so an efficient service delivery can be as important as price.  Firms need to segment their services so that clients have a choice of service levels and a delivery method to suit their needs. Firms can use technology to increase the productivity of their advisers, save time and money for their clients and increase access to regulated advice.

“We have seen in retail that those brands which offer multiple points of access, such as Next, have remained successful, whereas those who have not invested in online or ‘click and collect’ alternatives to the high street have gone out of business.  For most financial planning needs a traditional face to face service is not always necessary. Giving consumers access to an adviser, assisted by technology, helps to manage both time and money.
“An app based service with links to personal financial data, calculators, questionnaires and other service providers – for say wills, mortgages and personal insurance – can enable the adviser to concentrate on planning collaboratively with their client. This is what LEBC have trademarked as bionic advice ie human advisers augmented by technology. Younger consumers have grown up in an era of instant service delivery and if financial advisers cannot adapt to these demands they will be left behind.”