Tech-powered is empowered: SOAs

With no legal or regulatory barriers to using technology to deliver advice, the Financial Planning Association of Australia is confident the future of your practice is paper-free and prosperous.

Earlier this year, the FPA established The Future of the Statement of Advice Working Group which has now determined video, audio, imagery, infographics, graphs and even quizzes are the way forward.

"Our vision for the near future is to enable clients to engage with their own personal, interactive, real-time financial plan, in a secure portal or on a smartphone app," FPA head of policy and standards Ben Marshan said.

"It's about 'breaking paper' - we must utilise the full breadth of digital, tech and communication modes available to allow advice delivery to be more accessible, personalised and meaningful for clients."

Working with fintechs to create digital SOA technology, the association has conducted consumer testing on digital SOA examples.

All consumers tested said they much preferred a digital SOA and the ability to engage with and learn from their advice rather than read paper-based SOAs, the FPA said.

Digital delivery enables better understanding of and engagement with an SOA's content which will no doubt improve the chances of Australians accessing advice. After all, the Social Science Research Network has found that 65% of people are visual learners.

"Digital SOAs are key to improving the advice experience. By adopting technology to deliver advice in a smarter, safer, and more efficient way, the best client outcomes can be reached," FPA chief executive Dante De Gori said.

The future of advice delivery is one where every client is given their own individual, tailored experience based on their unique communication and behavioural preferences, he said.

"It will harness the power of appropriate digital technology solutions to make the experience a meaningful and more engaging one for the client. It's about prioritising what's best for the client, rather simply ticking compliance and legal requirements," De Gori added.

The SOA working group consists of FPA members, regulators, compliance experts, lawyers, licensees, content and digital media specialists, and advice technology specialists.

Read more: FPAFinancial Planning Association of AustraliaDante De GoriBen MarshanSocial Science Research Network
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