This is a guest post, written by Austin Marie Gay. A recent graduate of Boston University and advocate for digital innovation, Austin shares how technology is impacting how millennials engage with businesses.

After a long day, I come home and begrudgingly go online to buy a replacement part for my desk. I’m a procrastinator and always put these little “errands” off, knowing that no matter how convenient shopping online can be, it still eats away at my coveted free time.

I google the product, review the first few search results, and then click on a link that sends me to Amazon. I soon remember why Amazon is a multi-billion dollar force to be reckoned with; it took me less than 30 seconds to find the replacement part I needed, add it to my cart, and place the order. Amazon is smart. They had all of my information stored, and with just a few clicks, I was done. You know a company is special when it can put a smile on your face and leave you impressed. I’ll be their customer forever if they keep it up.

While I love the speed and ease associated with Amazon, it has changed my views (and increased my expectations) on every other type of interaction. Millennials, in general, have been spoiled by intuitive technology services. And this leads me to the point of this blog post – many companies are disappointing millennials because they are not keeping up with the technology we expect.

As a recent college grad, “adult things” like finances have been on my mind. But I’ve had no idea where to start, not to mention very little time and money to sacrifice for expert advice. My parents suggested that I sit down with their financial advisor, but I prefer to be in control of my money and have little interest in the associated fees. After some research online, I finally came across a service that spoke to me. Charles Schwab’s new service, Schwab Intelligent Portfolio, is geared towards the cranky, impatient, and busy customer (like me). I love it. Just like Amazon, Charles Schwab understands the customer of 2015 who “ain’t got time” to study the market and choose the right investments.

Charles Schwab’s new service motto is “If you have time for a cup of coffee, you have time to start investing with Charles Schwab Intelligent Portfolios.” It’s an automated service that can build, monitor and rebalance your portfolio. Plus, there are no advisory, commission or account service fees. Charles Schwab uses innovative technology backed by an advanced algorithm and professional insight. For portfolios with over $50,000, they even provide a tax-loss harvesting service. The question is really, why would I stick to the traditional finance route when this is so convenient and profitable?

Charles Schwab, a well-established finance company, has done their homework. They know that every company is now a software company – and they’ve observed startups to find out how others are using innovative technology to delight customers. To stay competitive, Charles Schwab has introduced this technology, knowing that if they stick to traditions, their customers will leave and flock to the smarter startups such as Wealthfront and FutureAdvisor.

And for those of you who think Charles Schwab is overly concerned and that their market share is safe – you are wrong. Already, 67% are not getting an easy and seamless experience with the financial industry. You have to give customers what they want and you have to stay competitive. Let Charles Schwab inspire you and your team. If you haven’t already started, you’re behind. Now is the time to take action.


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