Business innovation and transformations: Have you thought of this?

Man holding lightbulb with lit up matrix surrounding it.

By AdviceBridge

I’ve recently had the pleasure of hearing from a number of tech experts in the wider financial market. Rather than hearing from the same old providers in the UK tech advice market, I wanted to hear from those who’ve led and driven innovation and digital transformations across the globe. 

Fintech Week London certainly gave me that opportunity. And I wanted to share with you some of the key things that stood out or were a useful reminder for us.  

Insights and thoughts came from:

  • Saira Khan – Head of Innovation and Partnerships for First Direct Bank (HSBC)
  • Kam Chana – Head of Future Finance Lab at The Royal College of Art
  • Conrad Ford – Chief Product Officer at Allica Bank.

The first difference I noticed was the real energy and drive these people had. They were on a mission to design the next generation of financial experiences and make them so much better. And it was the focus around the consumer (not the adviser or advice firm) that really stood out to me.

Don’t start with the tech

When reviewing your processes, procedures or technology don’t start with the tech. Even if you have a tech problem – don’t start with your tech. 

Start with the customer and what you are trying to deliver to them. 

Then work backwards, until you end up with something that you need tech to deliver. Does your current tech stack support this? If not, does it need a few tweaks or an overhaul?

And don’t forget improving your teams (and your own) processes and procedures. Removing the repetitive tasks from the to-do list of your planners and paraplanners will free up time so that you and your team can add more value elsewhere. 

Go bigger than Consumer Duty on your client proposition

With so much focus on Consumer Duty, and adapting to its requirements, it can be useful to step back and look at the bigger picture.

So, top things to consider when looking at your proposition should include the wider influences that are much bigger. 

The top six (in no particular order) are:

  1. Gen Z – actively shying away and dropping elements of older generations lifestyle
  2. Mobility – much greater expectation of remotely working from anywhere
  3. Active Retirement – not passing on inheritance but spending on activities
  4. Women Leading – Greater strength and voice than ever. Still expanding 
  5. Neurodivergence – 20% of people diagnosed (probably a lot more)
  6. Values v Lifestyle – Battling what they feel they should do v what they want to do

It’s worth thinking these through and spending some time exploring what they really mean. 

Could they impact your business or help you in refining your proposition? Could this review deliver a new client segment?

Don’t ignore Generative AI / ChatGPT

There is no doubt that the use of generative AI / Chat GPT is on the rise. In its first month of release ChatGPT had 57 million users (now at 170M+) and recent numbers show it has in excess of 13 million daily. 

These figures are constantly growing. 

To put that into context, it took 16 years for mobile phone use to reach 100 million users while it took just two months to reach that number for ChatGPT.

Think of your clients, your team, and your business:

  • AI won’t replace people in the main
  • Humans that adopt will survive – (and those that upskill)
  • AI will make people more effective
  • AI creates a better and faster experience
  • Think about how you could use it (but don’t just use it for the sake of it)

Don’t be afraid of change / transformation

Transformations are more than five times more likely to succeed when leaders model the behaviour, they want employees to adopt. 

50% of employees cite the owner/MD/CEOs visible engagement and commitment to transformation as the most effective action for engaging frontline employees.

BUT don’t call your “change” a transformation, change or project, as this will likely make people wary of what’s about to happen. Instead, try “Improvement Journey” or “Development Milestones”. 

Don’t make it into a big project. Break it down into smaller, less overwhelming chunks. The more there, is the longer it will take and the harder it will be to implement. 

If you can’t deliver it within 6 to 12 months, you are doing it wrong.

You will need to show “desired behaviours” to engage those around you and move forwards. 

Plus, you need to facilitate an environment where your team feel comfortable to say things without being shot down or ignored. 

This will enable your team to have more open, candid conversations, enabling improved performance.

Get in touch

To find out more about any of the above or how AdviceBridge could help you grow your business and benefit your clients, please get in touch. 

Email, book a demo, or call us on 020 3925 3850.