Iress expands super fund digital advice offerings

iress hostplus industry funds

28 April 2023
| By Rhea Nath |
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Hostplus and Industry Fund Services (IFS) are the latest sign-ups to Iress’ new tool that combines digital advice with personalised financial education based on member demographics and preference data.

Named “SuperSmart”, the tool would offer a suite of self-guided and affordable financial planning tools for super fund members with simple advice needs.

It would also provide efficient member engagement and education through multi-format content.

SuperSmart would merge licensed financial education and digital advice powered by Iress’ comprehensive financial planning and wealth management software, Xplan, and integrate directly into registry software, the firm said.

“Over 12 million Australians have unmet advice needs today, and this gap represents a significant opportunity for super funds to leverage technology and data to deliver their members engaging, highly accessible, personalised digital advice journey, while providing options to speak to a human adviser,” said Paul Giles, Iress’ chief executive of superannuation. 

“Iress is delighted to support Hostplus and IFS with mass-personalised, education-led digital advice solutions that enable their members to achieve better financial outcomes both today and in retirement. 

“SuperSmart is the natural extension of our extensive experience in advice delivery, providing super funds with an integrated digital advice and member education experience.”

Presently, Iress’ digital advice software generated more than 21,500 interactive advice journeys per month for super funds.

Paul Watson, Hostplus group executive for member experience, said advice was a “critical service offering” at the $95.4 billion fund.

“We’re passionate about ensuring that when our members are ready for advice, they’re aware that we can provide it to them on their terms — whether that be digital, in person or over the phone. 

“We also recognise that our advice solution needs to be scalable to reach the level of membership that we have, and partners like Iress and IFS not only give us the ability to boost our current advice offering but, vitally, continually collaborate in optimising the experience over the long term.”

IFS’ executive manager of advice solutions, Adrian Gervasoni, said: “IFS is very focused on driving innovation and efficiency in how industry super funds are able to deliver great advice at scale. 

“By partnering with industry leaders such as Iress and Hostplus, we feel we have the capabilities, risk appetite, conviction and clarity of objectives to seed a market-leading solution. Importantly, this solution must meet the member’s needs and not be just a widget-building project.”

Iress recently made changes to its senior leadership teams following a strategic review of its business and launched an innovations division. It had said it would lean into its core software offerings, which would include reinvestments in advice technology, expanding its connectivity capabilities in wealth and trading, including Xplan Affinity, and exploring opportunities offered by AI and data.

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