Face-to-face advice less popular than it was

Recent research has found that there has been a 10 per cent decrease in people using face-to-face financial advice to plan their finances than there was seven years ago.

This is a result of technology being used more and busy people becoming used to the ‘faceless’ approach. However, many financial advisers find that a mix of the personal touch plus technology gives both them and their clients what they need.

As one financial adviser commented, more and more people are using video chats or other technology to talk to clients about simple matters and then a face-to-face conversation if the subject is more complex.

The use of technology is allowing businesses and their customers to have the best of both worlds. Many firms are now offering remote advice through split screen technology, which allows the client and adviser to share reports, files and documents online while speaking to one another on the phone.

In addition, for clients who are out of the country, ‘face time’ conversations can be very useful, although this tends to work better when there is already a personal relationship that has been established.

As one financial adviser explained, it would be difficult to work with a client remotely from day one, as body language is so important in any relationship, particularly one where trust needs to be built.

However, for established relationships, where the trust has already been built up, technology is very useful, as there is now a way that businesses and customers can store their signed documents privately and safely online, while making the document easily accessible when needed.