The future of the financial services industry has been put to the test as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic. With “Shelter In Place” lockdowns all throughout the county, and even the world, many financial advisors and financial businesses are being forced to implement new models to conduct business. From lead generation and initial consultations to on-going wealth management and annual reviews, traditional processes are changing in an effort to continue moving the needle forward.
Thankfully, technology has been a catalyst for change throughout all industries, and the financial services sector is no exception. Financial service businesses are relying on new technology now more than ever before to meet client needs. Many organizations have implemented virtual consultations, online webinars, and other no-contact practices that have bridged the gap while people are under orders to stay in quarantine.
Even before the spikes in web conferencing, the financial industry has seen many improvements in relevant tech that have made machine learning and data processing more efficient. Financial advisors have an expansive network of tools and resources available to more effectively understand market trends and deliver key insights that help inform decision making and improve account performance.
Despite so many new innovations that we’ve seen over the last decade or so, the financial services industry has only recently started to catch up to other service industries in terms of digital engagement. The Coronavirus has largely propelled, or even demanded, this change, and it’s got us thinking how “telefinance” will become a new standard that will shape the future.
What Is Telefinance?
Telefinance is the concept of delivering financial services through a mobile phone, tablet, or personal computer. Telefinance provides an outlet where retirees and general clientele can reach their financial advisor and review important account information in a single platform.
The concept of telefinance is largely similar to that of telemedicine—where the health industry has been practicing digital health services for several decades, though the rise of telemedicine really began in the 1990s.
Telemedicine has provided significant benefits to patients and health professionals throughout the world. Health institutions that have implemented telemedicine practices have seen reduced costs, fewer missed appointments, and reduced risk of spreading infectious illnesses. Telemedicine has improved the health industry in many ways that, when the concept is applied to additional industries, could also improve finance service operations.
The Pillars Of Telefinancial
The concept of telefinancial is grounded on three pillars that we should prioritize and strive for while we continue to shape this movement.
- Create more value for clients through more touchpoints
- Optimize business operations with a more efficient web-based platform
- Obtain better data that informs decision making
Creating Value In New Ways
Telefinance is an opportunity to add more value to the customer experience than ever before. With strategic thinking and implementation, we can connect with clients whenever and wherever they need support. This will help build strong relationships that boost long-term business growth.
Clients that can reach out to their financial advisor while they’re on a lunch break or traveling for business are going to have higher customer satisfaction overall. Telefinance provides an outlet that will reduce traveling expenses, mitigate scheduling fatigue, and provide more touchpoints without interfering with their life quite as much.
Improving Business Operations
Successful implementation of a web-based platform will also result in a shift in business models that could result in additional revenue. Whether it’s reducing general office expenses by allowing a larger remote workforce or improved employee efficiency, telefinance has the potential to significantly increase profit margins.
With a new network made available to all prospective clients, the barrier to enter will be lessened, resulting in an increase in initial consultations. In addition to more leads, a streamlined telefinancial application will help meetings run more efficiently, enabling advisors to obtain key information quickly without the need for notes, document transfers, or other activities that can be performed automatically through an online service.
Better Data For Better Business
Data insights will also be an essential benefit of this new development. Whether we’re data mining user search queries to uncover trends or we’re tracking common application uses, a brand new network that all clients are actively using will open the door to new data that will give us the chance to optimize business operations.
Strategic thinking will help us uncover many of these new insights that we had never been exposed to previously. We can unlock new information that will guide decision making and even allow us to make educated predictions about our immediate future.