The managing director of a leading brokerage has advised the industry to take caution before investing in technology, adding that he does not believe it will “take over” broking.
Speaking on The Adviser’s In Focus podcast, managing director of the Australian Lending & Investment Centre (ALIC) Jason Back warned that brokers should think twice before investing in something they “don’t understand”.
“Technology’s a really exciting space, and I think we often have fear of change, as most people generally do,” Mr Back said.
“[I] just think sometimes we’re not great at understanding the technology that’s available.
“One of the things that we’re really cautious about is entering into markets that we don’t understand.”
Mr Back urged brokers to seek advice from experts before investing in measures to integrate technology into their business’ practices.
“Now, I go and talk to other brokers [and] I’ve seen brokers out there who are bringing in IT people into their business. I sit there and go, wow, that’s courageous.
“Do I want to drop another $70,000 or $80,000 a year on having a programmer in my business to be creating the apps or tech bolt-on solutions to my existing tech when things are moving so far?
“I think people need to be really cautious about how much they get involved in creating the tech, versus letting the tech get created around them, and effectively using turn-key solutions.
“I’d be more inclined to speak to what you’re very good at, and let experts in the other fields develop those tools.
“Yes, they might cost a little bit more, yes, you won’t have them exclusive, but is that the main part of your business? Because for us, advice is our business; education is our business.”
Further, the managing director believes that technology will have an important role to play in the industry’s future, but he does not see it “taking over the industry”.
Mr Back will be leading a session at The Adviser’s annual Better Business Summit and he will speak to brokers about how they can supercharge their business practices.
Visiting Brisbane (15 February), Adelaide (22 February), Melbourne (1 March), Sydney (8 March) and Perth (15 March), the award-winning event provides brokers with straight-talking, practical advice to help drive and grow business.
[Related: In Focus: How to manage a leading brokerage]
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