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Battleground or Playground? Examining T3, Where Advisors and Technology Collide

Written by: Jimmy Moock

Elon Musk once famously likened the rise of artificial intelligence to “summoning the demon.” While the infiltration of technology into the financial advice landscape isn’t being described quite as ominously, the relationship between the two is nothing short of complex.

On one hand, technology is seen as the enemy. We’ve all become familiar with the narrative of how robo advisors are compressing fees and coming for your clients, starting with the millennials. And as their algorithmic sophistication grows, so will their reach.

Obviously, this storyline hasn’t exactly panned out yet, with assets managed by robo advisors still only representing a tiny fraction of the total pie.

On the other hand, technology is seen as an advisor’s knight in shining armor. Certain technology has the power to add value to an advisor’s practice in both the front and back office. Client portals and dashboards have become the norm, offering investors convenience and 24/7 access to their investment performance and portfolio makeup. The time-saving back-office efficiencies gleaned from being able to see all client information in one place, run portfolio performance analysis and seamlessly process fees at the click of a button empower advisors to spend more time coming up with creative and value-adding solutions for their clients.

Depending on which rabbit hole you dive down, technology is either making financial advisors more useful than ever, or marginalizing their existence into complete obsolescence. But the reality of the situation lies somewhere in between. While there’s some truth to both narratives, pinpointing technology’s net impact on the lives of financial advisors is a complicated equation.

It is this dynamic that electrifies the air inside of Joel Bruckenstein’s T3 Advisor Conference , one of the largest advisor technology trade shows, that takes place each February.

Related: The Future Is Now: How to Recruit Millennial Advisors to Your RIA

It’s impossible to know exactly what the future holds, but there will be some valuable insights shared at the show when it comes to how technology can benefit an advisor’s practice, as well as what advisors need to be aware of to stay ahead of the digital curve.

In that light, here are the must-see panels, in chronological, order featuring our clients at next week’s T3 in Florida:

  • Un-commoditizing investing through portfolio optimization: Introducing Orion’s new portfolio optimization solution with Sean Hollingshead, VP Business Development at Orion Advisor Services , LLC – 3:35 p.m., Feb. 7. Sean will be unveiling the functionality and details behind a powerful new direct indexing tool (dubbed “ASTRO”) Orion plans to release later this spring. Direct-indexing technology has the potential to be an industry game changer.
  • Is the tail wagging the dog? Does tech influence advisors or do advisors influence tech? – Panel discussion – 4:55 p.m., Feb. 7. This panel will take a closer look at the relationship between those developing the technology and those who use it. The panel also features Orion CEO Eric Clarke.
  • Lessons from your competition: How the largest financial institutions are increasing revenue while simplifying process with Tony Stich of Advicent – 11:15 a.m., Feb. 8. Hear Tony’s tips for driving growth for your financial advisory practice and cultivating better long-term relationships that will continue through multiple generations.
  • CRM Scheduling, Simplified Forever with Sayer Martin of Orchestrate LLC – 5:30 p.m. Feb. 8. Learn how to use Salesforce and Orchestrate’s new apps to simplify internal and client self-scheduling once and for all.
  • The connected consumer with Jason Gordo, Head of National Advisor Partnerships at United Capital – 8:40 a.m., Feb. 9. Jason Gordo will share five rules that will help today’s advisors better serve clients, as well as discuss the best tools for the job.
  • Segmenting Your Practice with Digital Advice with Mike Kerins, RobustWealth – 9:30 a.m. Feb. 9 9. Listen to Mike’s top tips for implementing easy-to-use technology that can optimize an advisor’s practice and add value for their clients.