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UK wealth managers enduring post-RDR slump in confidence

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UK wealth managers are suffering a crisis of confidence post-RDR as just 17 per cent believe knowledge and qualifications are their greatest assets, according to research.

A study from Pershing, part of BNY Mellon, examines the extent to which UK wealth managers are being forced to re-examine their value proposition in light of the implementation of the RDR.

Through the Looking Glass: An Executive Perspective of UK Wealth Management in an RDR World concludes that despite the arrival of the new regulations, less than a fifth of wealth managers feel their skills will be of greatest value in regards to the future of their business. 

In additon, two-thirds of respondents do not feel that wealth management is currently a premium service, believing it needs to compete with other parts of the financial services industry. 

Almost 40 per cent of those surveyed feel the primary value delivered by their firm to clients is through the personal relationship they offer. Some 46 per cent consider managing existing client relationships to be critically important to the future of their business. 

The report shows 83 per cent of respondents consider segmenting clients and better understanding their needs as ‘most important’ or ‘important’ to future business, while clearly defining their offering and how it is different from competitors follows with 77 per cent.

Segmentation, improving client communications and improving customer relationship management systems are cited as key to managing existing clients. 

Managing compliance costs and headcount in support functions are also listed as premium priorities, with 36 per cent and 32 per cent respectively considering these the most important costs to manage. 

Pershing chief executive Kevin Bonar says: “The UK wealth management industry is working through some of the most dramatic regulatory challenges in a generation and is addressing its need to adapt.

”Right now, for many firms just surviving is key, longer term it is understandable firms are concerned with developing the most effective value proposition they can offer clients.”

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