19 Oct

Robo vs Human - The 'Pensions Surgeon's' view!

- Why technology will never replace the experience of 1:1 pension meetings 

Before you say of course he would say that...he is not a Millennial or Generation X (and he advises on pensions)... hear me out.

Financial advice in all forms is important – whether it be in a decision regarding paying back debt, saving for your future, protecting your loved ones and buying your first house.

Technology is here to stay, there is no doubt and it certainly plays a role in assisting with the financial advice experience. In health terms I read about how you can now check your sugar levels and other physical attributes with online technology (even mobile apps). This is definitely an important development in monitoring and recording data. However, you still need to have the diabetes nurse explain what the indicators mean for you on recording high levels of sugar and the dietician to explain and put in a suitable personal diet/exercise programme.

In my opinion the need for social (face to face) interaction in many sectors of industry will remain.

Whilst not being a complete luddite towards technological advancements (I have lived through the introduction of the computer over last 30+ years). Technology will enhance the experience allowing interactive projections and modelling scenarios during your meeting. I genuinely believe nothing replaces a face-to-face meeting

You immediately build up a warmth and credibility from that first meeting – that smile or handshake. Something I don’t believe the technology can fully replicate just yet.

A 1:1 meeting is more than just that. It allows an individual to open up and chat about all aspects of their life and circumstances.

Financial advice is not a straightforward exact science with predictable scenarios. Thankfully we are all different or the world would be a less colourful place. Many unique aspects combine to complicate financial situations – stage of life and personal aspirations to name just two. Obtaining aspects of an individual’s lifestyle, financial background circumstances are crucial to enable an understanding to be established which ultimately will lead to a suitable recommendation. Whilst technology can allow questions to be posed from afar they don’t get under the skin of a specific case. Responses don’t allow immediate further investigation or follow up in that moment in time not to mention the “gut” reaction to a specific question which can tell a lot about how comfortable an individual is with, for example, a certain type of investment.

My experiences of pension 1:1 meetings has also allowed an individual to identify further areas in which they require assistance. Whether it be that mortgage, life cover for spouse, Will writing or help with tax issues (even reclaiming higher rate tax relief). I accept an individual can make a request for such support but the trust built up in the 1:1 and the discussion lead chat opens up these issues allowing resolution to take place. A financially assured and stress free individual will certainly be a more productive one.

I have been called many things, but I did think the comment from one of my clients who introduced me to another colleague as the 'Pensions Surgeon quite apt. We do offer and provide financial surgery to resolving the most suitable outcome within the financial health check market.

Give us a call for some DAM pain free surgery and to discuss your company pension requirements.




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