Called Silver Years by OCBC Life Goals, the new financial advisory and lifestyle programme for Singapore’s seniors aims to minimise the downside of the retirement risk zone, deemed to be the period of time of a person’s life aged 55 years old onwards. While most conversations with seniors are about retirement planning, which is centred on the allocation of savings in order to achieve financial independence upon retirement, OCBC Bank recognises that it is more important for people to look at wealth solutions that protect and grow their retirement funds that have accumulated over the years while minimising investments risks in order to maintain their desired retirement lifestyles.
Results from a research study with Singaporeans of ages above 55 years old pointed out that even as lifespan expectancy gets longer, seniors feel that banks are not doing enough to help protect their hard earned wealth while defraying their lifestyle and health expenses. Beyond just a higher interest rate savings account, these savvy seniors are looking for income-yielding investment products with managed downside risks that will carry them through their retirement years.
Beyond financial advisory for wealth protection, Silver Years by OCBC Life Goals has partnered the Infocomm Media Development Authority to develop a customised curriculum to teach seniors Internet banking and cashless payments conducted at 30 Silver Infocomm Junctions located island-wide. In addition, the usual rewards and good deals from merchant tie-ups from travel to dining and from medical to fitness have also been incorporated into the programme.
Mr Dennis Tan, Head of Consumer Financial Services Singapore, OCBC Bank, said. “At the age of 55 years old, customers are concerned about wealth protection and how to further accumulate their current retirement funds. They have reached a stage of self-actualisation and the need to constantly stay abreast of current trends. In our Silver Years by OCBC Life Goals programme, we offer solutions to these concerns. Celebrating what they have achieved is not nearly enough, we need to provide regular and timely financial advice. We also need to prepare them for the ever-changing digital transformation of the banking industry through workshops and provide access to relevant wealth and insurance products. We want our senior customers to be able to enjoy the same level of ease and comfort in today’s banking world.”
There are three areas where the Silver Years by OCBC Life Goals program will have an impact on its customers:
OCBC Bank’s Approach to Silver Years
Drawing lessons from the research, these seniors have a higher-than-expected risk appetite and “returns from investments” is the most popular choice when it comes to deciding what their primary source of income will be during their retirement years. This is in stark contrast to the usual stereotype of a conservative elderly investor.
They are keen to continue to invest in a managed portfolio of income-yielding products to maintain or increase their cash flow. A common gripe amongst these individuals was that after an investment product purchase, there was often no advice from their respective financial institutions on when to sell or re-balance their investment portfolios in order to mitigate the downside risks.
To tackle this head-on, one of the key aspects of Silver Years by OCBC Life Goals is to ensure that market events do not disrupt the retirement plans of clients. To this, OCBC Bank has identified 30 unit trusts and bancassurance products which are most suitable for clients to safeguard their assets and build their wealth.
Better Protection through Insurance Coverage
Health matters are top of mind with seniors and more than 60% of them are constantly evaluating the adequacy of their current insurance coverage. To ensure its comprehensiveness, OCBC Bank distributes a range of relevant hospitalisation, personal accident and selected whole life insurance plans that requires no medical underwriting.
In addition, for all new and existing ElderShield members regardless of insurer, OCBC Bank will be offering ElderShield supplementary plans provided by the Great Eastern Life Assurance Company Limited to enhance basic ElderShield’s benefits, such as increasing monthly pay-outs for life.
While the seniors who participated in the research are able to carry on their ways of life, they want to be availed contingency health care plans in the event of the untoward happening. The programme is therefore partnering with medical care providers like and Jaga-Me Home Care to provide clients with medical nursing home care services at preferential rates.
Getting Seniors Smart Nation Ready
Adopting and adapting to new technology can be daunting for the older generation of banking customers. Silver Years by OCBC Life Goals is committed to help seniors be future-proof. OCBC Bank is a one of the key partners in IMDA’s e-Payment Learning Journeys, where seniors, go on an experiential journey to start setting up their bank account and to use e-payment in their daily lives. OCBC Bank staff and volunteers will be on hand during the Learning Journey conducted at various venues, to guide seniors on matters relating to their mobile devices, how to navigate their smartphones, and how to use mobile banking apps such as OCBC Pay Anyone to make e-payments.
Re-disseminated by The Asian Banker