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Working with robo-advisers is ‘fascinating’ – Legal and General

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  • 15/05/2017
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Working with robo-advisers is ‘fascinating’ – Legal and General
Legal and General has noted that working with robo-advisers through its mortgage club has been “fascinating” and that advisers have greatly increased their productivity.

The firm added that due to regulation rules there would always need to be a real person taking responsibility for the advice.

But it noted that brokers should use new technology to become smarter and slicker.

“We’re working with two robo-advice firms who decided to put their business through the L&G Mortgage Club and its fascinating to watch them,” said Legal and General director of housing partnerships Stephen Smith (pictured).

Speaking at the MyHomeMove conference, Smith continued: “Both of them have real people – there isn’t such a thing as real robo-advice as yet because at the end of the day somebody has to take that regulatory responsibility of having advised upon their mortgage.

“The process may have been streamlined, it may have been curated by an adviser so he can deal with 1,000 cases per year instead of 100 cases per year, but it’s still a human being that on paper is responsible for that piece of advice.

“As long as regulation requires the naming of an individual then I don’t think it’s the end for brokers.”

 

Increased productivity

Smith added that brokers should use new technology as to improve their processes, productivity and customer interactions.

“What robo-advice gives is the opportunity for brokers to be smarter and slicker and the ability to do more volume and be more productive,” Smith said.

“So I wouldn’t necessarily view it as a threat because there’s an awful lot of what a broker does in the initial information gathering interviews which is actually a clerical practice – which could be done upfront by the customer themselves.”

 

‘A people business’

Instead, Smith urged brokers to emphasise the personal value and service that they could provide while engaging with new technology.

“The challenge for the broker is to find where they can really add value to that customer,” he continued.

“If you’re advising a customer, understanding their needs is an invaluable human trait that people place value on and I don’t think that will go away.

“Arranging a mortgage is a people business, I think it will always be a people business because house and home are all very central to people, and people like to deal with people” he added.

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