Using the blockchain to improve access to financial advice
This article was written by Suhail Ahmad, Founder and CEO of AdviserDirect.co.uk, a digital platform connecting small-medium enterprise with qualified business and financial advisers 24/7 to help solve money, management and growth challenges.
There is no shortage of business “experts” offering advice and services to small-medium enterprises (SME) across the UK. So why is it that in a recent survey of over one million SME’S, 49% said they avoid hiring advisers or consultants due to the costs. With 40% of all businesses stating they find fixed fees to be inefficient and the main reason for their dissatisfaction with the service they received. They don’t feel their getting value for money despite spending over £60 billion annually on external advisory and consultancy services.
When making a big financial decision is to seek expert advice from various sources in order to make the most informed decision. A good business or financial adviser can be an invaluable resource helping business owners avoid pitfalls and overcome roadblocks. Being an adviser myself for over a decade, I could sympathise with the pain and frustration faced by entrepreneurs and small-medium business owners. Many of whom simply can’t afford the time and cost of evaluating adviser or getting the most important second opinion. Often resulting in them making poor financial or as we would say “less optimal” decisions that have real consequences on the success of their businesses.
In addition to cost, trust and confidence in the ability of the advisers is key determining factor in choosing an an adviser. Connecting businesses with trusted and suitable advisers in a digital marketplace enables lower costs and improved speed of service. But how do you accelerate the speed of trust when advisers won’t necessarily meet in person and could be across the country or the world?
This is where blockchain technology has the potential for solving the trust issue by helping develop a secure trusted mechanism. Blockchain, originally developed as the accounting method for the virtual currency Bitcoin, uses distributed ledger technology (DLT) to verify transactions and is now being used in a variety of commercial applications worldwide. It’s ability to provide authentication and security could be a fast adoption and use of digital platforms for the delivery of advice.
AdviserDirect is launching a feasibility study to help evaluate the transitioning of its existing advisory platform on to the blockchain. Incorporating it’s existing AI research on to help businesses more seamlessly search, compare and access advisers most suitable for their requirements. Using smart contracts and smart identity can help build a more transparent reputation system providing businesses unparalleled confidence in the advisers, their experience and credentials. The blockchain will also enable peer-to-peer transactions and low cost micropayments so businesses can pay for advice by the minute and advisers can access their funds instantaneously.
To learn more about the blockchain and AdviserDirect initiative, please contact Suhail Ahmad at +44 (0)131 208 2786 or email firstname.lastname@example.org