To meet clients' expectations, you need integrated digital solutions that support your business end-to-end

For registered investment advisors, there's little question that technology can make your business more efficient and serve clients who increasingly expect real-time information, support and responses.

Recent shifts in the ways we interact with each other have only heightened the need for remote communications and reliable transactions and recordkeeping from anywhere. Small wonder that more than 81% of financial firms in one survey said they'll increase their tech spending in 2021 by more than 5% from 20201.

But how can you be sure the technology you invest in will provide the efficiency returns you expect? Yes, price matters. But asking these five questions could help you avoid "hidden risks" that diminish what technology delivers to your business.

1. Is it integrated?

Implementing new technologies can help make your individual functions, whether client communications, portfolio management or back-office administration, quicker and easier. Yet unless they work seamlessly together, multiple platforms may actually introduce inefficiencies as you manually move information back and forth. A 2020 survey by J.D. Power showed that just 21% of financial advisors describe their technologies as completely integrated2.

  • Takeaway: Systems that integrate operations could save time and help prevent lost information and miscommunication. The J.D. Power survey revealed that higher levels of integration produce higher satisfaction.
2. How easy is it to use?

Imagine if you had to understand the workings of an internal combustion engine in order to drive to the store. Your specialty is responding to your clients' needs and improving their financial lives. Every hour you and your team spend trying to adapt to complex processes is an hour away from your clients.

  • Takeaway: Look for technology that is designed for ease of use and that comes to you ready to go, adding immediate value to your business.
3. Will it enhance communication or create barriers?

Too often, technology serves to separate one human being from another. When clients feel they're being pushed off to deal with an automated phone voice or confusing website instructions, that detracts from the trust you've built.

  • Takeaway: The technology you use to strengthen your business should break down barriers. By relieving you and your staff of onerous tasks, it should enhance your human connections.
4. How flexible is it?

Your clients expect you to provide superior, uninterrupted service. According to a recent Financial Planning survey, 72% of advisors are now spending more time telecommuting, two-thirds are using remote video to meet with clients and 63% are using remote video for team conferences3. Technology that lives solely on your office server or that makes remote access clunky or inefficient can be a distraction for your business.

  • Takeaway: Systems should work as well from remote locations and mobile devices as from the computers in your home office.
5. Whose brand will it enhance?

Your clients chose to work with you - not with those supporting your operation. To clients, your firm's name - your brand - represents familiarity, trust and peace of mind. Technology that compels them to use separate portals under the provider's brand could create confusion and a feeling of disconnection from you.

  • Takeaway: Technology should work seamlessly through your own portals, adding value and convenience for your clients while enhancing rather than distracting from your brand.

Looking for digital tools, technology, and an experience designed for RIAs and their clients? AssetMark Institutional would like to get to know you. Schedule your consultation.





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AssetMark Financial Holdings Inc. published this content on 30 November 2021 and is solely responsible for the information contained therein. Distributed by Public, unedited and unaltered, on 01 December 2021 14:50:04 UTC.