A Decade That Reshaped Wealth Management:

Digitization and personalization of advice + The increasing costs of security and regulatory issues

Trends Intro Paragraph

Before drawing the curtain on the past decade, let’s look back on the past 10 years and reflect on the many momentous developments in the financial services and wealth management industry. Perhaps the most significant 10-year span the industry has seen, advancements were led by technological capabilities and competitive pricing reductions. With a new year and new decade off and running, we asked leaders at Schwab to offer their perspectives on the most significant changes in the past 10 years and their impacts on investors.

Trends 1: Neesha


Digitization and personalization of investing and financial advice

Few things have impacted the financial services landscape as much as the rapid and innovative deployment of technology across the industry. The use of new developments like artificial intelligence have improved client experience, with more-efficient and personalized interactions between firms and their clients. Increased digitization across the industry has led to a wave of hyper-personalized, new financial touchpoints like sophisticated mobile applications, digital assistance and personalized reports and statements for investors of all kinds. But perhaps the most monumental change has been the emergence of automated investing and advice offerings. These platforms combine algorithm-driven technology with credentialed professionals to make investing and financial planning more accessible and affordable to consumers.

Wealth Management Trend: Neesha Quote

"Digital transformation is about creating better digital experiences, enabled by new applications of technology, but that does not mean transforming how a company engages with clients. At the heart of meaningful digital transformation is a mindset within a company: how much the company thinks about its clients, how clearly company objectives are linked to client objectives, and how talent is aligned and empowered to deliver against those objectives."

Neesha Hathi, Managing Director, Head of Wealth & Advice Solutions, Charles Schwab & Co.

Trends 2: Peter


It is increasingly expensive to operate as the costs for cybersecurity, compliance, and regulatory oversight continue to rise for firms of all sizes.

Security and regulatory issues hit right at the heart of trust in the financial services industry.

Regulators and markets are demanding new ways of doing business. With more consumer data online than ever, companies must employ an array of advanced technology and compliance solutions, while striving to build a culture of risk management.

But this effort to deploy people and technology to safeguard sensitive information and protect against risk doesn’t come cheap. For example, at Schwab, we’re spending more than $2 billion on technology every year.

Wealth Management Trend: Peter Quote

"Scale matters and will only increasingly matter in our industry over time, particularly as costs related to cybersecurity and regulatory oversight challenge the efficiency of smaller firms."

Peter Crawford, Chief Financial Officer, Charles Schwab & Co.
Peter Crawford, Chief Financial Officer, Schwab

Part 1 of a series