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Drawing upon a deep digital product and leadership career at companies like Schwab and JPMorgan, Fred Duden shares how companies can deliver solutions that meet the evolving needs of the industry and consumers. From the evolution of robo-advisors to the future of omni-channel communications, Fred explains how to achieve “Strategic Execution” in this Reimagining Communications podcast.
The Evolution of the Robo-Advisor: “I think the robo-advisor is evolving pretty quickly. Many companies are trying to figure it out and testing different pricing models for it. I don't think the larger companies that have implemented what I'll call ‘digital or scalable advice’ for a certain portion of their client base are really thinking about it as a robo. I think it's moved into being a suite of services they offer.”
Omni-channel as a Game-Changer: “What's happened over the years is a lot of asset flow has gone to what would have been more of the online competitors, and the online competitors are moving upmarket relative to thinking about how to get more full-service advice. They're competing for advice products. Then, there are the full-service broker-dealers saying, ‘Well, how do I make a better digital experience?’ I think it’s converging on, ‘How do I serve my clients where they want to be served, how they want to be served, and by what vehicle they want to be served?’ Omni-channel seems simple, but it's really about ‘I want to be on my phone. I want to look at the app. I want to use a website. I want to interact with a person.’ So, it’s creating that omni-channel ecosystem. We've been investing a lot in digital. I think of it more as an ecosystem of communication.”
Product at the Leadership Table: “I believe product is not just about strategy, but it's also about the execution of that strategy. I'm a big believer in strategic execution. Without the execution side, what are we delivering on? From a technology perspective, given everything we do is reliant on our strong development capabilities, I think it's incredibly important for product to sit with the C-level and leadership team. I think if you were to look at some of the larger technology firms over the years and their evolution, you would see product moving continuously up in some of the most successful ones.”
Bringing in the Outside View: “Companies are looking for a more cohesive platform that's componentized. We've seen a lot of investment and a change in perspective on Cloud. We've seen a change in perspective on SaaS providers, and we have a strong view of becoming even more of a SaaS provider than we are today. I think clients are looking for that. The end client, or consumers, are looking for communications in a snackable way, so they can get quick information. That's important… Our clients want to be able to say, ‘This is core to my business. I have a great platform that does this already, but I need these four other things. Can you do these four things without having to do the whole thing?’ That's incredibly important.”
Future Direction: “Digital is evolving the financial services industry... Think about how many transactions are done on your mobile phone. It's going to be interesting to see how my kids want to be communicated with and how they expect to communicate in 10 years. I have a 13-year-old daughter. When she's 23-years-old, I can only imagine what her experience is going to be. I think it's going to be really interesting to see which companies can attract her as a client.”
To dive into these topics and more, check out our podcast, Reimagining Communications.