Report summary

The first instalment of Futurewealth 2015 seeks to understand where the relationship manager sits within the wealth management operating model.

What you need to know in brief:

  • Contrary to industry myth, a majority of clients - 62% - would stay with their wealth management firm if their relationship manager left for a new institution.
  • Almost half of our Futurewealthy participants think there is room for improvement in the collaboration between the relationship manager and firm to provide access to the guidance and information needed to make informed investment decisions.
  • On average, our HNW respondents have been working with their primary wealth management firm for 13.6 years.
  • For 10.2 years of this relationship, on average, the Futurewealthy have been working with a single contact point at the firm; their relationship manager.
  • 59% of respondents believe that the main responsibility of their relationship manager is to improve their financial situation.

Futurewealth 2015

This is now our sixth year telling the story of the global Futurewealthy.  During our time as narrator, we have learnt all about the things that enhance their lives, careers and financial relationships.  Our ongoing objective with this research has been to challenge the wealth management industry's assumptions about the extent to which it knows its clients.  We do this by asking the world's wealthy the questions others are often afraid to ask; questions about their hopes, fears, motivations and, crucially, their perceptions of the financial firms they work with.

In this sixth phase of research, we consider how they, the Futurewealthy, engage with the relationship manager at their primary wealth management firm.  Their responses have given us an idea about how the client engagement model needs to evolve as businesses adapt to the challenges and opportunities of modern wealth management.

Over the coming months we will be releasing four papers which look at every aspect of a client's interaction with their relationship manager.  In the first paper, we examine the core functions of the relationship manager from the perspective of the global wealthy.  Then we consider the contact strategies adopted by firms to connect with these clients.  In our third paper, we look at the extent to which relationship managers are delivering on core client outcomes.  Finally, we assess the fiscal and non-fiscal value of this indvidual within the entire business structure.


Wealth management firms, private banks, RIAs, investment advisors, family offices.

Research process

This is the sixth year of our Futurewealth research series. The report findings are based on the views of 3,113 individuals from around the world with an average worth of US$2.7 million. We refer to them as the Futurewealthy because they are at the front of a global charge up the wealth curve.

Futurewealth is a global customer insight programme that examines wealth management trends and the thoughts, needs and aspirations of HNW investors. In 2009, when many in the industry didn’t believe that it was possible to survey wealthy clients in statistically valid numbers, Scorpio Partnership began this attitudinal research programme. Today, over 15,000 HNWs have taken part and their input has created a database of over 5 million segmentable data points.

This wealth management research was conducted using an online survey.  Participants were identified using profiling techniques to determine their likelihood of qualifying as Futurewealthy candidates.  They were contacted directly by email.


HNW Research


Scorpio Partnership, SEI (NASDAQ: SEIC), NPG Wealth Management