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Client numbers and technology use climb for advice firms

31 March 2021

Nearly half of advisers (48%) have seen their client numbers increase over the last 12 months, despite the Covid-19 pandemic, and a further 53% anticipate there will be more clients looking for advice going forward.

According to the findings from Intelliflo’s Advisory Business Impact Poll, technology has had a key role to play in helping advisers work with clients through the pandemic.

More than a third (38%) of advisers said technology had enabled them to service clients in different locations over the last year, with 67% adopting technologies they plan to implement permanently – compared to 42% who reported the same in April 2020.

Similarly, the number of respondents who reported adopting new technologies to become more efficient has risen to 64% from 32% a year ago.

When asked what their business has been able to improve on over the last 12 months, better adoption of technology with employees (65%) and better adoption of technology by clients (60%) came out on top.

Intelliflo’s Personal Finance Portal showed the number of users increased by 85% between January 2020 and January 2021, while the number of documents sent via DocuSign rose by 1,608%.

Meanwhile, Intelliflo’s poll also showed that adviser concerns had changed over the past year. While 40% of advisers cited a reduced level of business as a potential challenge last year, only 9% of advisers reported this as an issue in the latest poll. Instead, the greatest challenges for the next six months of this year were staying abreast of changing rules and regulation (35%) and time management (32%).

Nick Eatock, CEO, Intelliflo, said: “These findings bring some much-welcomed positive news for the advice profession, following a highly uncertain period. When we spoke to advisers last year, they were understandably cautious and nervous of what lay ahead but, a year on, advisers have proved themselves to be resilient and quick at adapting to fit their customers’ needs.

“Clearly, technology has made the last year easier, with businesses being able to quickly move to the virtual world. In doing so, advisers are finding greater efficiencies and new uses of technology that are helping their business grow. We look forward to seeing this continue as we move forward in a new era for financial advice.”

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