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‘We have a duty to make it easier for advisers’

Stuart Wemyss

In his first article, Stuart Wemyss, Client Services Director, explains more about the plans for our service to advisers and how our focus on getting it right first time and listening and understanding is the foundation for a new, intuitive approach.

For all the difficulties of the past year, the pandemic at least underlined how the power of technology can connect colleagues and clients wherever they’re located.

In fact, the coronavirus crisis accelerated a major digital shift for many businesses, including adviser firms which adapted quickly to remote working practices while reassuring their clients throughout lockdown.

For our part, we supported advisers where we could, redesigning processes and continuing to evolve our service to meet their needs. We introduced e-signatures and a digital drawdown form to make things easier, allowing advisers more time to spend with clients.

Over 12 months on, and with our lives slowly returning to a post-pandemic world, we’re stepping up the pace to continue to make it easier for advisers.

To align with the ambitions of our new name, abrdn, launching later this year, we’ve recently announced the start of our Adviser Experience Programme. As part of the programme, we’re making changes to deliver a more seamless, intuitive experience for advisers and their clients as we face the future together.

Because it comes to our service, we have a duty to make it easier for advisers, so they can access the information they need when they need it. That way, they can talk to clients with confidence and have a meaningful impact on their financial wellbeing.

'We mean it when we say ‘get it right first time’

The driving force behind our commitment to continually improve is our client-led approach. For us, it’s about understanding what matters to advisers and their clients and designing our service around their demand.

Our goal is to deliver a leading service by focusing on our four experience principles. One of these is getting it right first time. This underscores everything we do and, when it comes to our service, we keep our advisers and their clients’ data safe by operating a robust and effective end-to-end control environment.

Our highly-experienced team is dedicated to managing our control environment efficiently to support our ‘right first time’ rates. We’ve developed rich data and insight tools that allow us to analyse the root cause of issues so we can take immediate action when required. This data analysis helps us drive proactive, continuous improvement across both our control environment and our service to advisers.

Introducing a more flexible and intuitive contact service

Getting it right first time and creating capacity for advisers are just two of our service improvement priorities. Listening and understand is another one. Over the past 12 months, we’ve spent a lot of time listening to what matters to our advisers and to help them adapt to the ever-changing needs of their clients.

That’s why, at the end of June, we’re also enhancing our contact centre capabilities to become much more of a client engagement hub that delivers service excellence with the help of world-class technology.

We’re implementing Amazon Connect and Salesforce Service Cloud so our specialist team can deliver an even more personalised and responsive service. It’s technology used by some of the leading service companies across the globe and we share their ambition to deliver a market-leading service experience in line with advisers’ needs.

The benefits of the new technology for both our team and advisers are endless and include:

  • improved speed when answering calls
  • dynamic routing of calls to the right team member, with the right level of knowledge
  • offering a 360 degree view of our advisers and their needs to deliver a much more personalised, one-stop service.

The new technology will also give us even richer service quality measures and feedback to complement our state-of-the-art demand analytics and tailored, adviser-specific insight. For us, being client-led never stops.

We will continue to do more to support advisers

Although we have ambition, the coronavirus crisis has taught us many lessons about what’s important in life, not least how we have a social responsibility to help each other.

It has also taught us that we can adapt to new ways of working, and continue to provide a professional, seamless experience for clients. And as a provider, it’s our job to enable adviser firms to operate efficiently and to keep pace with the changing needs of clients in a post-pandemic world.

We’re focused on delivering a ‘right first time’ service as the foundation for how we support advisers. And our client-led approach means harnessing the very best technology available to free up our dedicated team to give the best service for advisers.

Delivering a great service experience is only the starting point.

We’re passionate about analysing demand data to save advisers time and, in line with the evolving needs of our advisers and their clients, we generate tailored, service insight to continually listen, learn and adapt.

One example is analysis which allows us to target areas where advisers can quickly access what they need online to help save them time and create more capacity to focus on their clients. We’ve already been working with a number of advisers on this and the feedback to date has been excellent.

From getting it right first time to listening and understanding, a step change in the service we offer advisers is coming.

Read more about the launch of our Adviser Experience Programme

The value of investments can go down as well as up and your clients could get back less than they paid in.
The views expressed in this article should not be regarded as financial advice.