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Advice firms plan in long-term remote working

25 August 2020

More than half of adviser firms are set to work remotely in the long-term following on from the Covid-19 crisis, new research from Intelliflo has shown.

According to the software firm’s poll, 59% of adviser firm employees have not yet returned to the office in any capacity and 53% of employees expect to work remotely in some capacity. It comes after both advisers and support staff said lockdown restrictions had transformed their ability to work remotely over the past six months, with 84% now fully optimised to work from home compared to 47% prior to the pandemic.

As a result of the shifting dynamics, three quarters (76%) of those polled said they would rather see their firm allocate their office spend elsewhere – 42% would rather see more spend on technology, while a third (34%) would rather keep more cash reserves. More than one in 10 (13%) firms plan to either downsize or remove their office space entirely.

Advisers said remote working also had the benefit of freeing up more time to focus on clients, with 52% stating that the time saved by not commuting was now spent working with clients.

More than a third (36%) of advisers said they would consider adjusting their service proposition to suit an increasingly online world and believe providing a virtual advice service would be a cost effective way of servicing more low income clients.

The poll also revealed that 89% of clients felt satisfied or very satisfied with a remote service and many clients have made better use of technology to stay on top of their finances at home.

Nick Eatock, CEO, Intelliflo, said: “It’s important that advisers have the flexibility to choose a way of working that benefits them and their clients and technology is a crucial enabler of this. It’s encouraging to see from our data that the adoption of technology is up from both advisers and their clients. We’re expecting this to mark a permanent shift in the way that advisers operate in the future.

“Advisers can now reap the benefits of working remotely, helping them to become more agile and efficient without compromising on the value they deliver to clients.”

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