What’s the problem?

Over the last 100 years or so, financial institutions have accumulated large numbers of customers using their services. This has been both via direct sales, and mergers and acquisitions. Over this time period, the way in which this data is stored and administrated has changed dramatically thanks to the advent of technology, regulation, and digitisation. As custodians of assets, this has created a huge problem for financial institutions which has led to a data pandemic of tremendous scale.

Why now?

As a financial firm, you’ll  be familiar with robust authentication processes and maintaining customer relationships for a long time; even after customers have passed away. As your products and services become more widely available, populations become ever more mobile, and communication moves towards majority-digital, bringing your historic customer book up-to-speed is proving to be an increasingly difficult task. This is only exacerbated with the passing of time.

Whilst there are services that begin to address the situation, these often fall short of putting a dent in the ‘gone away’ volumes and do not address ‘known deceased’ account/policy holders, where you know of the customer’s death but don’t know who to speak to next.

The resulting remediation project that is now required, is made more urgent by the roadmap of legislation on the horizon. Much of the Consumer Duty principle supports improving customer outcomes, and we should ask ourselves if ‘gone away’ or ‘known deceased’ customers are benefiting from these.

The upcoming Dormant Asset Scheme expansion means that more firms will be encouraged to do something with the money held on account that belongs to these ‘gone away’ customers. We support firms’ integration with the Dormant Asset Scheme. Those firms who want to keep up with industry standards here, will need to ensure ‘all reasonable endeavors’ have been made to identify and connect with the rightful owner before funds are passed to the Reclaim Fund Ltd. Recently, Aviva became the first participant in an expanded version of the scheme which enables dormant assets to be used to support good causes 

The Estatetrace Solution

We do things differently.

Our bespoke approach augments human capabilities with digital capacity. Digital tracing methods alone are often ineffective at confidently identifying and confirming a match against customer records, especially where underlying customer information is either historic or incomplete. By applying human invention, our experienced team can interrogate all the available information, whether available en-masse or a case-at-a-time, to ensure the correct outcome for both the customer and their Financial Services provider. Estatetrace is not a ‘black box’ data in/data out solution – each customer record receives a unique investigation specified to its own requirements.

Our Client’s Requirements.

In general, we see our clients with at least one of the following frustrations:

  • “We have gone away customers who we’ve tried to resolve previously but attempts have failed.”
  • “We have customers on our book, (either marked as gone away or non-responder) whose age indicates they are probably deceased.”
  • “We have customers on our book who we know are deceased, but we have no idea who to contact about the open account or policy.”

If these frustrations are familiar to you, please get in touch.