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Platforms still under-serving advice sector, says Defaqto

26 February 2018

Financial information business Defaqto said platforms are still falling short when it comes to servicing financial advisers, despite a rise in the number of advisers using platforms. 

Defaqto reported a 45% rise in the number of advisers putting all their business on platforms in the last year to 16%, while 91% of advisers put at least half their business on platforms.

Despite this, the analysis showed that platforms are failing to meet adviser expectations in key areas, including pension freedom servicing, technical assistance and reporting (see table below).

Defaqto said that with many providers offering similar products, service is now one of the key differentiators for advisers when researching and selecting a product.

Advisers rated existing business administration as the service they considered the most important, followed by business administration and online services. However, satisfaction levels with these services fell by 7% year on year, with technical assistance declining the most by 10%.

Aviva, Aegon and Standard Life have increased in popularity, while Zurich, Old Mutual Wealth and Elevate suffered a decline. Around 17% of advisers reported changing their preferred platform in the last 12 months.

David Cartwright, head of insight and consulting for wealth and protection at Defaqto (pictured), commented: “Because the respondents are scoring their preferred providers, one would expect the response to be generally positive; however, where low scores are cast it is a wakeup call to the provider concerned that their supporting advisers are dissatisfied with some aspect of their proposition to them.

“Advisers choose providers for a number of reasons, not just good service and whilst on balance advisers may be satisfied with their chosen preferred providers, there may be individual aspects of service that fail to make the grade.”

The analysis showed that Parmenion Capital Partners, Transact and Wealthtime consistently rated highly in terms of satisfaction.

Adviser platform satisfaction results- 11 categories

Source: Defaqto

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