HESTA launches online financial education tool

HESTA has launched a digital help and education approach called Future Planner to improve the accessibility of financial advice to its 900,000 members.

More than 60,000 members accessed the service since it went live eight weeks ago, which HESTA chief executive, Debby Blakey, said was helping address a large unmet need in Australia for more personalised financial support.

“Future Planner aims to bridge the gap between high-cost financial advice that often exceeds the needs of many people and do-it-yourself online advice that’s often not personalised and isn’t designed to build confidence,” Blakey said.

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“Future Planner helps our members build confidence in their financial future by supporting them to take successive small but powerful steps that builds their confidence that they’re on track for a great retirement.”

The tool, designed around member surveys, provided digital general advice framed around personalised data that considered a member’s lifestyle and personal goals.

“We know from supporting our members for more than three decades that financial wellbeing is about much more than just the dollars in their super accounts,” Blakey said.

“It’s also about the peace of mind that comes from understanding you’re prepared for the future. It’s about feeling empowered that you’re going to make the most out of your super and knowing that you have trusted, expert support you can turn to.”

Designed with the help of strategic design and innovation company AKQA and advice software technology experts Iress, the tool gave members a snapshot of their future situation by incorporating other potential income such as the aged pension.

HESTA chief advice officer, Josh Parisotto, said many Australians believed they could not afford financial advice and find the prospect of planning for their retirement daunting.

“It’s a common misconception that financial advice is reserved only for the wealthy but that simply isn’t true, everyone can benefit from some help or advice,” he said.

“We want to remove these barriers. By digitally scaling our help and advice via Future Planner, HESTA members can access the service online.”

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