How to save 100’s of supervision hours using AI
How to save 100’s of supervision hours using AI
The increased demands of Consumer Duty mean having an effective supervision function isn’t a choice; it’s a necessity. Whilst most financial advice firms have made progress in moving towards risk-based supervision approaches, most supervision is still done the old-fashioned way – a person reviewing the output from another person.
However, a new piece of technology from Fireflies.ai could change all this. Imagine being able to search all meeting transcripts at once for key words, being able to hear a specific sentence in the meeting by clicking on that sentence in the transcript; and then turning this into a soundbite that can be shared.
Many people are still sceptical of the benefit of AI in financial services. For those who embrace it, supervision is about to change forever!
By the way, this articles is in no way sponsored by Fireflies.ai. This is us bringing you the latest technology to help you create more effective advisers.
Traditional supervision in financial services is constrained by resources. Whether it be observing meetings, reviewing transcripts, or checking files, most supervision activities involve people. People carry a heavy cost so the level of supervision will be constrained by the budget the firm attributes to its supervision activities.
Thankfully many firms are moving away from reviewing a static percentage of meetings or cases, and towards risk-based monitoring; tilting resources towards areas where risks are higher. However, even this approach leaves the majority of cases unreviewed.
What secrets lie dormant in these cases?
Hopefully the meeting was recorded via video-call or audio. Where it was, the complaints handler now needs to review the audio for from the meeting looking for clues which would back up or defend against the complaint. This can be like looking for a needle in a haystack, wasting hours trying to find a detail that would resolve the issue either way.
AI’s abilities are evolving rapidly and Fireflies.ai is the latest which could make supervisors of financial advisers be much more effective and efficient. At first, Fireflies.ai could be mistaken for an audio transcription tool. It does that, and quite well, however it goes further by understanding what the words mean using a large language model (think ChatGPT).
Fireflies.ai sits in the background of any online meeting, appearing as a participant. Alternatively, you can upload audio or video to the site after the event has taken place. Within a couple of minutes, you have the output from the audio.
The transcripts it creates are very accurate. Not perfect, but pretty close. However, by clicking on a sentence in the transcript, it starts to play the meeting audio from that point. The transcript sentences lighting up as the accompanying audio plays. Think Karaoke but without the singing! There’s also the ability to create snippets of audio, which are downloadable as an MP3 or WAV file.
You get a summary of what was discussed in each meeting and a list of agreed actions, which Fireflies.ai picks up from the audio. These are OK and should be seen as a good starting point, however you often get repeated actions if you summarise who is doing what more than once in the meeting.
There is also an inbuilt sentiment analysis, so you can see how much of your call was positive, negative, or neutral. I think this is more for interest than to use for supervision, however for the call’s I’ve used it in, it seems about right.
The cost of Fireflies.ai isn’t prohibitive at $19 per user per month for an enterprise model, which includes API access so you can extract records and automatically post the output to a client file.
The use case
Fireflies.ai lets one person search all meeting transcripts, or those in a specified range, all at once for words or phrases. From a supervision perspective, you will instantly know who explained their charges, who gave risk warnings and in which meetings the adviser asked for a recommendation from the client.
The supervisor can then just look at the cases where the words or phrases aren’t present in the transcript. Because the transcript is visible, the supervisor can cut to the point where something should have been explained and then listen to the audio, massively saving time and effort.
Whilst it will need to be proven, I think just one supervisor could conduct the review for hundreds of advisers. If that is the case, think how much time your other supervisors would have to be hands on with advisers to work through problems that have been identified. This is seriously good risk-based supervision!
What about complaints? The same logic applies, search the transcript of the meeting for the words or phrases the client has put in their complaint. Once you found the section of the transcript, simply click on it to hear the audio. You can then create a soundbite to share with the adviser, if the complaint is justified, or with the client, if you want to defend the complaint. It’s a lot harder to argue if you can hear you own voice saying “Yes, I understand that the value could go down”.
How about training? If you’re looking to coach advisers on a particular area, you can search the transcripts of their cases to see how they described something or the order they ran the meeting in. Once. You’ve found the section of interest, click on the transcript to listen that part of the audio, and then feedback to the adviser attaching the soundbite.
The possibilities are endless.
Beyond financial advice
This technology shouldn’t be limited to financial advice. It will work equally well for any type of business who work primarily on video call or telephone where audio can be recorded.
Want to become a more effective lead generation business – use Fireflies.ai to review the transcripts from your team and search for keywords or phrases.
For firms (or providers) running call centres, immediately get a handle on the sentiment of the calls coming in and what issues more people are calling about from the transcripts.
Regardless of what your business does, this tool could make a massive difference to the effectiveness of how you supervise your teams.
A word of warning
It’s not all roses though. There are two specific areas a firm would need to become comfortable with before launching into using the software:
1. Data storage locations
Fireflies.ai state on their website that they store and process data in the US “or any other country in which we…..maintain facilities.” For those firms in the EU, that may cause a problem. Fireflies.ai may be willing to make changes to this for larger businesses, but it’s certainly an important consideration.
As Fireflies.ai uses a large language model, it takes any data that it is given and uses this to improve itself. This doesn’t sound too bad, however if you think that it’s just heard Mrs Miggins policy number and investment balance, there’s a very remote chance this information could come out somewhere else – ie in a different conversation. This is less of a risk than ChatGPT as Fireflies.ai is creating a transcript from your call, rather than answering questions, but it is something firms would need to get comfortable with before using the software.
Future-proofing financial advice supervision
The financial advice world is on the cusp of a seismic shift. AI-powered tools like Fireflies.ai can no longer be seen as add-ons; they’re becoming necessities. They promise efficiency, clarity, and a much more effective way to manage risk-based supervision. Embracing change is not just about staying current; it’s about anticipating the future and using it to both deliver a better service to the client and increase your firms commercial success.
But such transformative change requires guidance and strategic integration. If you’re thinking about the next chapter of supervision for your advisers, book a conversation with us sooner rather than later.
The future is already here; are you ready for it?