Embracing the New Frontier in Private Wealth Management

Rapid advancements in technology, coupled with demographic changes, are reframing the business and service dynamic for private wealth management. Business leaders from a cross-section of the industry came together at SIFMA’s 2017 Annual Meeting, The Capital Markets Conference, to explore how these trends may alter the delivery of financial advice to clients and how individual investor service models can be enhanced to leverage these trends.

“Technology is a catalyst for advice, not a replacement,” noted Ronald J. Kruszewski, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Stifel Financial Corp., at the outset of the event. Panelists encouraged financial advisors and firms to leverage new technology to find success. Valerie Brown, Executive Chairman of the Board of Advisor Group, Inc., referenced a Fidelity Investments study that found 40 percent of financial advisors describe themselves as tech-savvy, with technology deeply integrated into their practice. Financial Advisors with these skills  have heightened success in their relationships with clients and improved overall interactions with investors.

In addition to leverging new technology, firms have an equal imperative to more effectively mirror the country’s demographics be it age, gender, race, ethnicity, or life style. Our ability to address this is vital to both our firms’ business success as well as being socially responsible corporate citizens, which are inextricably linked. This is vital to servicing the next generation of investors and in attracting the next generation of financial advisors.

Many firms are exploring new recruiting methods to reach a wider array of candidates.  In addition, some firms have embarked on university partnerships and many are testing new compensation structures for financial advisors.  The key to recruiting, noted the panelists, is effectively demonstrating the important role of the financial advisor, which offers a clear career path and an opportunity to make a real, positive impact in the lives of others.

For a deep dive into these and more of the most topical issues facing the private wealth management industry, join us at SIFMA’s Private Client Conference on April 11-13 in Naples.