Digital advice to drive down costs

“Most advisers take the view that the RDR (Retail Distribution Review) which is essence removed commission from investment products, provided the quality of advice but effectively reduced the distribution of it. Most will conduct a face to face fact-finding meeting but finding a way to do it remotely, lowers the cost associated with the advice process.

Less face-to-face doesn’t necessarily impact on the adviser-client relationship, as long as it is face-to-face when it needs to be,” says a prominent member of the IFA community.

Indeed he, – a member of the FCA’s Smaller Business Practitioner Panel since 2014 – sees client home visits being a thing of the past fairly soon.

“Two or three client visits a day is as much as I can do if I’m travelling. But if I’m hosting client meetings from my office I can do six, easily. It’s about the efficiency of labour and the associated impact on costs.

And he adds, Advisers are not as tuned to this as they might be, as they don’t record their time on the whole.

“Recording their time will give them more insight. Combine this with the increased use of digital assistance, and you have reasonable potential to drive costs down without reducing the quality of advice,” he says.