It’s almost here! The annual In|Vest conference is coming up next week (June 16th and 17th), and I’m proud to be representing NexJ as a sponsor for the event. For those unfamiliar, In|Vest is an annual conference that brings executives from US wealth management firms together with the latest fintech innovations. There are going to be some great topics this year, but I’m most looking forward to the Advisor Tech track and specifically hearing from John Michel, CEO of CircleBlack, on the “Value of Advice in a Robo World”.
The topic of robo-advisors is of particular interest to me. With Betterment, WealthFront, and others gaining market share from traditional brokerages – an industry shift is imminent. The question isn’t about what it is or if it’s here to stay (it is). If that’s not clear, let me remind you about BlackRock’s acquisition of FutureAdvisor for over $150M. Instead, it’s about how to use it, and what to do with your human-advisors. We’ve seen Charles Schwab and Vanguard go for complete business transformations in offering their platforms as a service. Others like UBS and Merril Lynch take the approach of incorporating them as part of an advisor toolset and changing the way human advisors work. I think this is the key strategy.
And as we heard recently, UBS’s investment into SigFig is big news. According to UBS, this will enable their advisors to “deliver truly personalized financial advice across the complete range of client needs”. SigFig is also presenting at In|Vest, so you can bet I’m going to soak up as much as I can. I think we’re really seeing the big firms embrace the idea of a Digital Advisor Experience that is symbiotic to a digital customer experience. This is exactly what I’ve been talking about with the firms I work with every day as a way of attracting and retaining human advisors in the face of robos. Enable your advisors to focus on providing value to customers how and when they want/need.
If you are headed to In|Vest too, let me know in the comments below as I would enjoy exchanging ideas and experiences related to digital advice platforms. Of course, you could always stop by the NexJ booth, #206 🙂 If we aren’t able to connect at the conference, or you’re just dying to hear about the topic sooner, then you’re in luck… You can join the discussion during my webinar on Tuesday on this very topic!