Is the prevalence of information hurting the financial planning profession?

November 2, 2017 Greg Caramanica

With the advent of information technology and the increased ability for people to find information at their fingertips, those in the financial planning industry might have been concerned that financial planners would go out of business. On the contrary, financial planners are being sought even more so – at least in our experience. What we’ve seen is that the availability of information has created consumers who are more financially literate and, as a result, are more aware of the kinds of things they should be concerned with. This awareness has nearly eliminated the need for financial planners to instill a sense of importance and urgency – clients already know that it is important to manage their finances and have a plan. Has this put financial planners out of business? In a word, no. The reason is simple. The prevalence of information, while making people more aware, has also resulted in an inundated consumer. The information that is so abundant is not just for financial planning, but for home renovation, car repair, economics, and any number of the million, or so, topics out there that one might be interested in learning. This torrent of information has created a more aware consumer, but also a consumer who is interested in finding a specialist who can help them to make sense of all the information. The availability of information has certainly changed the financial planning industry, but not how we thought. Instead of encountering people who are already experts in financial planning, financial planners are finding customers who are broadly educated in a number of areas and already understand the urgency of saving for their future, but looking for a partner to help them with the analysis and walk the path together. This is what we provide at Arlington Wealth Planning.