The Chancellor team are now all working from home and using so much “technology” to achieve a seamless service for our private and corporate clients.
We have full online access to our back-office systems via a Virtual Private Network (VPN) and we are conducting client review meetings via Zoom, Facetime and Skype. Many of our clients may have seen a advertisement on TV recently for Microsoft Teams; this service has allowed everyone at Chancellor to join in group video conference calls so that we are all kept “in the loop”, so to speak.
All of this has reminded our Business Development Manager, Dave Heaton, of a conference that he attended back in 1994.
One of the Keynote speakers (although Dave does not recall them being referred to as “Keynote speakers” back then) was from one of the big traditional Mutual household name “insurance companies”. He presented a session that said that one day there would only be a handful of what we now refer to as product providers (not insurance companies!) and many of the big household names would have merged – and their brand names would disappear forever.
At the time, this just seemed totally unthinkable. In fact, somewhat ironically, his employer “demutualised” and merged with another household name in 2009 – we wonder what became of him?
Anyone who is as old as Dave is (did we ever mention that he has been in the Financial Services industry for over 40 years?) might recall a TV ad for Smash instant potato where some robots were laughing uncontrollably at the concept of someone making “mash” from a real potato. The Keynote speaker got a similar reaction when he suggested that one day people would apply for life insurance, investments and pension plans by “using a computer”. Titters and some belly laughs went around the conference venue. This speech was only three years, we think, after the World Wide Web first became available to the public, so the speaker had a fair amount of foresight.
In 1994 Dave did not even own a mobile phone (that would come three years later), something that is probably unthinkable to the kids of today who seem to spend (and run) their lives on them.
Nowadays many functions which take place within the Chancellor Financial Management Ltd’s offices are done electronically and it is hard to imagine how we would have faced the current COVID Pandemic without all the “tech”.