Liberty’s Paperless Journey to adviser and client satisfaction

Article written by Muthaliep Karim. 

In Challenge 2015, Liberty made a commitment to work towards the ‘Liberty of the future’ - a Liberty that has easy and seamless digital processes in place for positive adviser-client engagement. On 1 October 2016, the company took an exciting step towards achieving this vision: the launch of Phase 1 of its Paperless Programme.

“Through the Paperless Programme, Liberty is making its mark by launching a digital process for advisers and clients, from their first meeting right through to a signed quote,” says Muthaliep Karim, Divisional Director, Retail Innovation. We are also working to digitize Liberty’s Risk Onboarding Process and provide a unique ‘FICA for Life’ solution as a value added service for all South Africans.

 Liberty giving users what they want

 Feedback from advisers and clients clearly showed that tedious, paper-heavy, back-and-forth business engagement is frustrating. Today’s advisers and clients value their time and want to conduct business in a quick and decisive manner. They also want relevant, secure, electronic communication. And that’s what the Paperless Programme is aiming to deliver. “The Paperless Programme makes it easy and convenient for advisers to do business with Liberty,” says Muthaliep. “We are aiming to give back the most important resource that we can to our advisers; time. Not only does reducing our use of paper improve our green footprint, but using technology to drive business will also make advisers and clients happy by improving turnaround times and enabling us to conduct business remotely.

How does Paperless (Phase 1) work?

 Phase 1 of the Programme comprises Pre-Population of certain new business forms and Electronic Signatures, enabling advisers to pre-populate and sign documents electronically, saving time and money.  

·        Pre-population: Client information only ever needs to be entered into the system once. After that, all client’s digital forms will be pre-populated. There’s no need to print, complete and scan documents.  Changes to client details can be updated and saved in the system when needed.

 ·        E-signatures: Once they choose to e-sign, advisers and clients are now able to access and sign documents with the use of an electronic device, including iPads, tablets, laptops, desktops and smart phones. E-signing can be done either face to face, where client and adviser are at the same place; or remotely from separate locations – including international destinations – at a time that is convenient. “In both instances,” says Muthaliep, “the client will receive a One Time Pin (OTP) via their cellphone. This OTP will allow them to sign the document – similar to the way bank accounts work. Advisers and clients will then automatically receive copies of the e-signed documents in their email inboxes. The signed document will also automatically be sent to Liberty’s storage containers.”

Pre-populated forms and e-signing are both ready for use by advisers, although Muthaliep notes that the current paper-based processes will continue to be available for advisers and clients that wish to use them. The pre-population and e-signing capabilities are currently available on BP Online and will be made available to BP Pro users in Q1 2017. Advisers can access the paperless tools by clicking on ‘Standard Forms” within the FA Zone or BP Online.

 How secure are the Paperless tools at Liberty?

The popularity of mobile devices has introduced major changes to information technology in all industries, but the one clear constant is the need for security.

Liberty has partnered with a company called Lawtrust, a subject matter expert regarding e-signatures. Lawtrust is accredited under the requirements of the ECT Act of 2002 for the provision of Advanced Electronic Signatures, which makes the e-signing process compliant and secure, giving advisers and clients peace of mind.

How do I access the Paperless tools at Liberty?

Any Liberty adviser, or Broker can use Liberty’s Paperless (phase 1) tools, as long as they are contracted with Liberty, i.e. use the Liberty systems. The pre-population and e-signing capabilities are currently available on BP Online and will be made available to BP Pro users by Q1 2017. Advisers can access the paperless tools by clicking on ‘Standard Forms” within the FA Zone or BP Online.

Liberty’s simpler, faster, easier and more intelligent Paperless Programme has just begun, and there’s a lot more to come in phases 2 and 3.
— Muthaliep Karim