Remote working could be permanent for 53% of advisers

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For intermediaries only

More than half (53%) of adviser firm employees are set to work remotely – wholly or in part – in the long term, according to a poll carried out by Intelliflo.

The poll found three in five (59%) employees have not yet returned to the office in any capacity, and by the end of the year, a quarter (25%) will still not have stepped back into the office.

This comes after advisers and support staff have transformed their ability to work remotely over the last six months, with the majority (84%) saying that they are now fully optimised to work from home compared to less than half (47%) prior to the pandemic.

Elsewhere, the poll found three-quarters (76%) of advisers would rather see their firm allocate budget elsewhere.

Some 42% would rather see more spent on technology than an office space, a third (34%) would rather keep more cash reserves, and a fifth (20%) would rather spend is allocated towards employee wellbeing. More than one in ten (13%) already expect to either downsize or remove their office space entirely.

Time for clients

Respondents reported saving time commuting into work, saving on average 60 minutes per day. Half of advisers polled (52%) said they now spend that time on clients instead, and more than a third (38%) believe they will benefit from being able to target more clients nationwide.

When asked about broader industry changes brought on by remote working, 43% of respondents expected remote working will increase diversity in the industry.

Moving to remove working on a permanent basis could drive down adviser fees, respondents suggested, after more than a third (36%) agreed they would consider permanently adjusting their proposition to suit the increasingly online world.

Elsewhere, the poll showed nine in 10 (89%) clients were satisfied or very satisfied by being serviced remotely and, according to Intelliflo data, clients have continued to make better use of technology to stay on top of their finances at home - logins to Intelliflo's Personal Finance Portal, a tool that allows clients to view financial information and interact via a secure online hub, increased by 383% between February and June this year.

Intelliflo CEO Nick Eatock said technology is crucial to give advisers the flexibility to choose a way of working that benefits them and their clients.

"It's encouraging to see from our data that the adoption of technology is up from both advisers and their clients, with almost four times as many clients logging into their portal now compared with earlier this year. We're expecting this to mark a permanent shift in the way that advisers operate in the future.

"Advisers can now reap the benefits of working remotely, helping them to become more agile and efficient without comprising on the value they deliver to their clients," he added.

 

This article was written by Hannah Godfrey from Professional Adviser and was legally licensed through the Industry Dive publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@industrydive.com.