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Four vital questions to ask that will improve your advice firm – Howells

by: Richard Howells, managing director of Sesame Network
  • 16/10/2020
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Four vital questions to ask that will improve your advice firm – Howells
People’s expectations of service are changing, and the benchmark is constantly being raised based on experiences outside of our industry.


For many people the slick customer experience they receive from brands such as Amazon is in stark contrast to the mortgage process, which is often perceived as slow and cumbersome – an issue that’s been heightened further by the Covid-19 pandemic.

To prosper long-term, it’s important for advisers to compete with the best customer experiences and that’s what we must strive for.

So, is there an opportunity for advisers to differentiate themselves?

Studies have found that brands providing a superior customer experience generate greater revenue than competitors that lag in this area, so it certainly makes good business sense.

One of the issues advisers face is that providing a hands-on and personalised experience for every customer is time-consuming.

But what if there was a way to scale the excellent customer experience that’s delivered by advisers every day, and roll this out to a wider pool of existing and prospective customers?

This is the conundrum advisory firms face, so here are four questions to help advisers find a solution:


  1. Can processes be automated?

If there are any processes within the business that are currently manual but could be automated or conducted by customers themselves on a self-serve basis, then this could be an opportunity to save time. This time can be reinvested in delivering an excellent service where it really counts.


  1. Can customer communications be automated?

If advisers currently rely on calendar reminders to ensure they remember to send individual, templated emails to each customer when their current rates or products are coming to an end, then this time and effort could be better employed elsewhere. It’s a process that could be streamlined by introducing email automation. Furthermore, recommendations about other products and services could be included, or partnerships with trusted third-party providers.


  1. Can some communication be moved online?

Web chat has been proven to allow users to serve three times as many customers as phones. There could be an opportunity for the business to introduce webchat surgeries to enable the firm’s advisers to serve more customers by answering their questions in real-time over web chat.


  1. Can questions be answered before they’re asked?

More people are now turning to video streaming sites like You Tube to learn new skills from experts. In response to this demand, more firms are exploring the online tutorial approach by recording videos designed to address commonly asked questions. These can be published on the firm’s website and on social media channels. They can also be distributed by the firm’s admin team when a question comes in from a customer, freeing up advisers’ valuable time by not having to talk to every customer about every item.

Introducing just a couple of these small adjustments could prove very effective in saving time and resource, while also giving customers a more streamlined experience.

The valuable time that’s saved can be reinvested in providing the personalised service that truly sets great businesses apart.



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