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Advice will face customisation revolution

The future of the SMSF advice proposition will mimic the same shift experienced by other industries whereby services will be mass produced yet remain customisable for clients.

“We focus on the increasing trend toward customisation,” La Trobe Financial chief investment officer Chris Andrews said during the SMSF Association National Conference 2018 in Sydney last week.

“The introduction of mass production has allowed cheap goods in the hands of the ordinary consumer.

“Where we are today, we’ve taken the next step, which is that we want mass production but we want it to be almost infinitely customisable.

“So the next lot of efficiencies for advice will come in the form of technologies that deliver that.”

Andrews stressed it was not necessarily all about robo-advice.

“It is simply a matter of harnessing available technology to build processes that suit what the modern client is after,” he said.

“And as a business owner, you should combine that with streamlining your own operations as that’s a really powerful combination.”

He used McDonald’s as an example of customisation occurring in the hospitality industry and asked delegates to imagine how that could be applied to financial advice.

“You can now build your own burger by specifying what type of bun, condiments, et cetera you want, and you don’t even have to talk to staff, which is quite extraordinary and in many ways is completely contrary to how we’ve read about how McDonald’s has systemised all its processes,” he pointed out.

“It’s no different to you as a financial planner.

“The ability to allow a client to control their situation and to customise their portfolios to suit their own circumstances is only going to get more and more important and it will become the absolute norm.”

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