Voya Financial is the latest independent broker-dealer to embrace digital advice.
The company plans to launch a hybrid robo-advice product called Voya Digital Adviser that combines human advisers with automated investing for accounts as small as $5,000.
Unlike many firms that provide a hybrid robo, Voya is not offering a direct-to-consumer version of the product. Voya Digital Adviser is strictly for Voya advisers looking to complement their current service offering.
The goal is to build a more interactive digital experience for clients, make Voya advisers more efficient and modernize the way both advisers and investors interact with the broker-dealer, said Andre Robinson, head of advisory solutions at Voya Financial Advisors.
Voya’s research shows that more than half of advisers think a hybrid digital advice tool could help them grow business by 10%, Mr. Robinson said. Advisers also said a robo would make it easier to access client information, connect with younger investors and serve smaller accounts.
“If you look at the traditional advice model, it’s meeting face-to-face, it’s brochures, it’s paperwork,” Mr. Robinson said. “We wanted to prune those components away from our financial advisers, and the robo solved for that.”
Voya Digital Adviser will integrate into an adviser’s existing website, where prospective clients can answer questions about investment goals and risk tolerance, and receive an automatically generated portfolio. It will be up to each financial adviser to decide exactly how they want to deploy the technology or charge for accounts managed by the robo.
The tool will not affect the adviser’s