One year on from its launch to the farm sector at the NFF's National Congress, Findex CEO Spiro Paule reflects on how the Family Office model is reshaping delivery of financial services.
Over the past couple of years, there’s been a significant shift in the financial services industry that we have been predicting. With increased automation and cloud-based technology at the forefront of change and disruption, there’s a deep-seated thirst and demand for traditional financial services businesses to deliver more value to their clients.
Irrefutably, individuals and businesses are being overwhelmed with options when it comes to managing their financial affairs. They’re required to engage with numerous different businesses and specialists in order to ensure the various components of their financial portfolio are taken care of. This cycle results in an inconvenient and more expensive experience, not to mention, exposes them to issues regarding the quality and consistency of service.
With our significant help, we can now see a real shift in the way that our clients are thinking about creating and managing wealthSpiro Paule, Chief Executive Officer, Findex
With our overarching vision to ‘revolutionise wealth and empower ambition’, Findex has tackled this problem head on over the last 12 months by combining great technology with great people to create our Family Office model – the only one of its kind.
This ‘one stop service’ covers all facets of one’s financial affairs and is available to our clients across the business. One year on, Findex has more than 60 active ‘families’, made up of multi-skilled advisers who are actively collaborating to enhance our clients’ entire financial strategy, presented in one streamlined and holistic offer.
With our significant help, we can now see a real shift in the way that our clients are thinking about creating and managing wealth – and we are on the front line driving it with them.
Unsurprisingly, people want to achieve more with their money. So, when we launched Family Office, we sought to disrupt conventional practices – the disjointed services traditionally offered to businesses and individuals. In so doing, we provide our clients with access to their own suite of financial and business advisory specialists, through a single point of contact – under one umbrella.
We have an extensive range of service lines to assist individuals, small businesses, right through to big corporates; and as a result, all our clients are trusting us to take them beyond the realm of their usual financial service, to address their ongoing challenges.
As you may have all heard many times before, The Family Office-style service has traditionally only been available to very wealthy individuals and businesses; but we have made it affordable for everyone.
Relationships have always been the foundation and lifeline of the professional services industry. No amount of disruption or automation can override one of the most critical things consumers crave – trust in their adviser.
As advisers, we must take that responsibility very seriously and put it to good use in making our clients better off. Credibility and experience is important, but not rare; you can find an adviser with years of experience anywhere. The best advisers have a deep understanding of their clients’ needs and speak their language through increased interaction. That is how trust is best built and retained in a business like ours.
Our client’s best interests must be at the core of everything we do for them, and our relationship must reflect that in every way. Clients are better serviced when they have multiple trusted relationships they can rely on, and a range of touchpoints, which is what our Family Office provides. These are all facilitated through the client’s main point of contact- their Key Relationship Manager.
Over the past 12 months we’ve seen our advisers and our clients work together much more intimately through our Family Office. Through these experiences, our advisers are becoming far better informed to identify the trends and gaps in the market. The feedback and observations we’ve made over the past year validate what we’ve always believed since the Findex business was born 30 years ago – there is an enormous gap between what clients really need, and what the industry is able to offer them. The Findex Family Office seeks to fill that void.
In creating Family Office, I believe we have redefined the scope of a new, more dynamic financial services industry.Over the past year, we have identified tens of thousands of clients who welcome and would benefit from access to additional services and information from their adviser.
The fact is, many clients want to build their wealth and improve their businesses, but are incapable or unwilling to speak to and deal with the many different people and skillsets to achieve what they want. The launch of Family office has enabled us to help solve a broad range of issues for our clients, and has opened our eyes to the opportunities and the hurdles that are on the horizon.
I am proud of what we’ve been able to achieve so far, but the work does not stop here for us. We must continue to evolve and innovate, to ensure we’re at the forefront of the ever-changing financial landscape.
Spiro Paule is the Chief Executive Officer of Findex, a partner of AustralianFarmers and Australasia's leading provider of integrated financial advisory and accounting services.
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