The financial services industry continues to be in the path of the forces of change. But, with change comes opportunity — especially for those organizations and individuals who embrace and champion change.

The Financial Services Evolution: 2017 Predictions Report from LIMRA revealed ideas about where the financial services industry is going. Rocco Taglioni, Senior Vice-President, Head of Distribution, Individual Insurance and Wealth at Sun Life Financial offers his thoughts on the future of regulation in financial services — and what it means for your clients and your business.

Rocco Taglioni

“The underpinning of what most of the regulations are trying to drive is more client centricity — ensuring that what is being done is in the best interests of clients.”

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There’s no denying that financial services regulations are complex and far-reaching. However, while regulation can seem challenging at times, there are opportunities for companies that really champion the regulatory changes. “I think the greatest opportunity is for companies to look at regulatory change as a way to be fully client-centric. The underpinning of what most of the regulations are trying to drive is more client centricity — ensuring that what is being done is in the best interests of clients,” says Taglioni.

Embracing regulations comes down to professionalism and robust processes. “Running and managing a professional practice that embraces strong compliance and business governance, processes, models and programs — those are the ones that are going to do exceptionally well in the years to come,” says Taglioni.

SIMPLER PRODUCTS? MAYBE NOT. BUT, CERTAINLY CLEARER

Financial products and solutions are not simple by definition — nor should they be. As a rule, we need to get better at explaining the complexities in a clearer, more easily understandable way. “Products are complex because they’re trying to achieve complex things. But, the need for flexible and easier-to-understand solutions will drive how products are constructed in the future,” says Taglioni, adding, “If clients understand what they’re actually getting, then clearly it’s a better experience for them and their advisor.”

THE ART AND SCIENCE OF FINANCIAL PLANNING

On one hand, financial planning is more science than art in terms of developing a financial plan. However, we “cannot underestimate the art part — the human part,” says Taglioni, continuing to add, “The most powerful element of financial planning is understanding the client, the nuances of how each individual defines peace of mind, their knowledge level, their behavioural tendencies. The art has to be part of the science.” When you look at the total value an advisor can bring, it’s a combination of both art and science that clients are looking for — today and in the future.

STAY AHEAD OF THE TRENDS 

Regulation is and will continue to be a hot topic in the coming years. You can take comfort in knowing the trends shaping financial services are leading to better ways of helping Canadians achieve lifetime financial security and well-being. Working to understand the trends will help your clients and your business — today and tomorrow.

Focus on professionalism and client centricity by:

  • Building and maintaining your professional practice
  • Embracing relationship management excellence
  • Staying up-to-date on regulations and financial planning standards and practices
  • Understanding all products and solutions and explaining the complexities to clients in an easily understandable way

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Originally published on Advisor.ca