The future of advisor platforms

In this final post examining the Capgemini study “Improving Financial Advisor Productivity through Automation”, we’ll take a look at the conclusion of the study, and what they advise the next generation of advisor platforms need to look like.

A next generation advisor platform, in order to keep up with the fast-paced changes sweeping the financial sector, the key functionalities a next generation advisor platform will have are:

Real-Time Updates ensures the making of informed decisions both by advisors and clients. They help in portfolio adjustments with real-time data feeds.

Streamlined Business Processes help advisors / firms operate efficiently to keep the costs low, and provide better transparency and a seamless client experience.

Multi-Product, Multi-Asset Class Capability is critical for processing various classes of investments across client segments.

Flexible and Agile Platforms allow firms / advisors to add business services as required. Technology components can also be upgraded with improved functionality more easily with a Services Oriented Architecture (SOA).

Compliance and Risk Management for the wealth management firm and the client to meet regulatory requirements and manage credit, market, and operational exposures to events that can negatively impact portfolios and profitabilit.

Scalability to support increases in levels of business volume into other market segments and geographies without a corresponding increase in the firm’s cost base.

The next generation platform aims to provide easier, faster and centralized access to all relevant tools and information. Next generation platforms support the advisory process through strong integrated workflows and leading edge applications. Key components of the new platform across the advisory value chain are as follows:

Prospecting & Relationship Management: Integrated a lead and contact management system to allow efficient prospecting / relationship management. –Efficient alert mechanism for advisors to track leads

–Access to all historic and current client data which helps in better understanding client needs / goals

–Reports on advisor productivity with up-to-date analysis of leads and their usage

–Supports client segmentation and customer analytics to identify opportunities

Investment Planning: The financial planning system is centralized and comprehensive with records for all client information.

–Enables a complete view of client history, financial goals, and assets

–Comprehensive risk management / scenario analysis tool which runs various scenarios for exhaustive client risk assessment

–KYC tool is integrated to capture all relevant client data for compliance purposes

–Compliance checks are initiated even before a financial plan is prepared

–Alerts / triggers based on life and liquidity events of clients

Client On-Boarding: Unified account opening tool which selects and pre-fills the existing client information (information entered in one tool reflects across tools / systems). Financial planning and portfolio management tools are integrated together.

–Provides streamlined account opening and paperless processing

–Facilitates step-wise approach to financial planning, automatically prepopulating the planning tool with data that exists in the client profile database

–Financial planning output is directed into the portfolio management tools

Servicing & Monitoring:

–A holistic 360° view of the client’s financial assets

–Helps in integrating a team-based service delivery model along with the traditional relationship based advisory

–Alerts and notifications that provide real-time messages driven by deviation from desired returns

–Customized views of client holdings, account information, service requests, and financial analytics

–Automated routine financial monitoring per defined benchmarks

Centralized Client Reporting & Alert Interface: The new platforms will be able to generate a wide range of custom reports without the advisor having to go to different applications (from the simple account balance / net worth to a complicated attribution analysis).

–Consolidated reports with data across all accounts and group of accounts (total assets with the firm, total equity holdings across all accounts)

–Reports with a consistent and professional look and feel

–Alert / Early warning system to proactively identify and address issues

The key to a good advisor workstation is the integration of data and a well orchestrated set of technology components. In addition to providing new and advanced features, the new platform should have a well-defined information architecture which promotes a greater adoption and usage.

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