Rest, Midwinter unveil new advice portal

20-Dec-2016

By Daniel Paperny

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Superannuation fund Rest Industry Super has partnered with Midwinter to launch a new digital advice platform for members.

The new platform, Rest Advice Online, will be delivered via Midwinter’s Advice Operating System (Advice OS), allowing Rest’s customer base of 1.9 million members to receive real-time tailored financial advice.

The platform is aimed at solving simple advice issues for fund members, who will receive an emailed statement of advice after answering a series of questions and prompts about their financial goals and circumstances.

Members would be able to make changes to their super account from any mobile device and could continue the conversation online or over the phone, the fund said.

Speaking to financialobserver, Midwinter managing director Julian Plummer noted that driving super fund member engagement remained a significant hurdle for many funds in Australia as they adapted to a growing millennial customer base.

“The key challenge super funds face is that the millennials tend to be less engaged with their superannuation as retirement seems such a long way off for them,” Plummer said.

“We’re pleased that we have been able to provide an omni-channel advice system for super funds regardless of what level of advice their members choose to undertake.”

Rest Industry Super chief executive Damian Hill said a key aspect of the new platform was that it allowed members to seek personalised financial advice on their own terms.

“For many Australians, investing can be a daunting task and superannuation – which is an important long-term investment – is no exception,” Hill said.

“Rest Advice Online allows members to make an informed decision about how they’d like to invest their money and grow their retirement savings with confidence.”

He said the first iteration of the platform would focus on helping fund members choose an appropriate investment option and would be expanded over time to encompass a range of advice options across more channels.

Plummer noted one of Midwinter’s key areas of focus in the coming year would be expanding its presence in the super sector by providing both digital and more comprehensive advice solutions to super funds.

He said robo-advice offerings should be regarded as just one part of the end-to-end solution super funds needed to adapt to in relation to the changing rules of advice engagement.

“Midwinter is certainly expanding its reach within the superannuation space as we see this as a great opportunity for technology to aid in member engagement,” he said.

“The ability for members to self-help [when it comes to] advice and then escalate up to phone-based or face-to-face advice is resonating with superannuation funds.”

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