Creating a Digital-First Mindset for Wealth Management Firms
Today’s consumers shop on their phones, chat with friends and bots, and have the world of information at their fingertips.
Nearly everything in our connected world is digital, and wealth management needs to follow suit. Digital efforts are no longer just nice to have — they are central to connecting with clients, providing amazing service, and creating a future-ready wealth management firm.
But moving towards a digital focus is more than just building an app and website. It starts with a digital-first mindset that permeates the entire firm and is felt in every strategic decision and interaction with clients.
Creating a digital-first mindset puts wealth management firms on track for a digital transformation that builds a solid competitive advantage.
A Digital-First Mindset Explained
A digital-first mindset is an attitude that prioritizes digital offerings, externally for customers and internally for employees.
That mindset fuels every decision and strategic goal made by the firm. It is the foundation of a strong digital focus that creates a competitive advantage for the firm and its advisors. When a firm has a digital-first mindset, every employee thinks through problems from a digital lens and looks for ways to streamline operations and increase offerings through technology.
Deloitte and The Wall Street Journal put it this way: “Many companies strive to establish a digital-first mentality but may focus more on implementing digital technologies than on creating holistic digital organizations. A digital-first company not only uses technology in innovative ways but also creates cultures, structures, and processes to support digital optimization.”
A digital-first mindset encourages innovation, creativity, and efficiency. Firms that adopt this mindset continually look for new solutions to serve their clients and move the industry forward.
The Importance of a Digital-First Mindset
Simply put, a digital-first mindset matters because customers demand it. Customers have become accustomed to digital convenience in nearly every aspect of their lives and expect the same from their wealth management providers.
Much of life moved online during the pandemic, which made consumers feel more comfortable sharing their personal financial information on digital channels. As customers see the convenience and speed of digital, they want it more and more. FICO found that 71% of U.S. consumers are now willing to open an account digitally.
Digital usage in financial services shows no signs of slowing down. In fact, 51% of global clients — including 78% of Millennials — plan to increase their use of digital tools in the future.
As younger generations increase their wealth and become powerful wealth management clients, they want to connect with advisors on their terms. A digital-first mindset is mandatory for providing relevant services to younger clients and standing out for the next generations.
A digital-first mindset also transforms how work gets done internally. Moving towards digital solutions and fostering an attitude of innovation and experimentation increases efficiency and collaboration for your advisors, increasing employee engagement and driving firm growth.
Establishing a Digital-First Mindset at Your Firm
A digital-first mindset isn’t created overnight but requires concerted effort, especially from firm leaders. Changing the attitude and culture of the firm to encourage and celebrate digital innovation requires getting everyone on board. When every employee and advisor sees the benefit of a digital mindset, they are more likely to adopt it themselves and look for ways to make the firm more digitally savvy.
There are six principles of a digital-first mindset. Think of these as the general steps to take to create a digital-first mindset:
- Emphasize digital-first culture.
- Evolve human behavior.
- Implement proactive training.
- Champion cloud migration and data storage.
- Integrate emerging technology.
- Strategize operations.
But creating a digital-first mindset isn’t something you can check off when it’s done. It becomes part of the foundation of the firm’s culture and requires continual consideration and effort.
Docupace is a digital leader for wealth management firms. For more resources on how to adopt a powerful digital mindset and your firm, download our special report below. The wealth management future is digital, and it’s within reach for your firm with the right mindset.