Mercer has announced the launch of Facebook chatbot, SuperBot designed to provide the “missing piece” in engaging with the “smartphone generation”.
The company hopes to connect with the 17 million active Australian Facebook users and encourage them to undertake a “health check” on their super.
According to Mercer, the Millennial generation is not engaging with the abstract concept or retirement as it’s just too far away.
Chief customer officer for the Pacific, Cambell Holt said that while 80 per cent of Australians do not seek financial advice, for Millennials the barrier is often just language.
He argued: “If the industry wants Millennials to engage with their superannuation and retirement strategies we need to speak their language across the media they relate to.
“We need to deliver an experience that demystifies superannuation and empowers customers to engage and interact with super on their own terms, anytime and on any device.”
Observing that millennials are set to constitute two-thirds of the Australian workforce by 2025, he said it was “essential” that Mercer worked with new technologies to boost members’ engagement.
“Millennials are digital natives and expect the convenience of being provided financial advice about superannuation in a format and medium that suits them.
“Through enhanced member engagement, more customers are setting up salary sacrifices, consolidating, making informed decisions and actively engaging with our financial advice. Overall, this means they’re heading for a better retirement.”
Mercer’s announcement follows the launch of “Cadobot”, a Choice campaign designed to “end the super double dip”.
The Facebook chatbot, or “Super Avocado Chatbot” in full, has a tagline that it “can't buy you a house but I can save you money”.
Taking aim at suggestions that younger Australians could get onto the property ladder if they simply eschewed weekly smashed avocado brunches, consumer advocacy group Choice says the bot helps users consolidate their superannuation and as such do away with multiple fees.
The bot which is “not a sentient avocado” reminds users that it’s “a fruit, not a financial planner” and talks users through the steps of consolidating their super with their MyGov account.
Additionally, REST Industry Super in December unveiled “Roger”. Roger is REST’s “online virtual customer service specialist”.
Launching the bot, chief operating officer Andrew Howard said: “Technology enables us to connect, engage and better serve our members. With more than half of our members under the age of 30, and three-quarters under 40, providing a 24/7 user experience is key to helping members take ownership of their superannuation.
“Despite the significant role superannuation plays in shaping our future, unfortunately for many Australians, especially younger generations, super is often out of sight, out of mind.”
As with Mercer’s bot, Roger allows user to experiment with different scenarios and options.
“By providing enhanced visibility of our members’ accounts and offering greater access to rewards and incentives via our app, our members are empowered to play a more active role in planning for their future,” Mr Howard said.