The Case for Technology Consolidation, Part Three: Exceeding Expectations with Tech Unification

By Vestmark Inc., Resources

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It’s a challenge borne of benign origins: firms are fielding fallout produced by the technology they’ve implemented and developed to capture opportunity, not create problems. These tech stacks—built on good intentions—are weighing down advisors and contributing to burnout and turnover among financial advisors, operations, trading, and other teams at the firm.

Client expectations for highly personal experiences, more services from their advisors and the evolution of sophisticated portfolio solutions as wealth grows and goals become more complex, are raising advisors’ expectations for more efficient and streamlined workflows, powerful features and advanced tools.

But in the rush to provide advisors with the latest and greatest, implementation has not always been synonymous with full integration.

A fragmented approach at some firms has created complications for the advisor-client relationship, introduced inefficiencies and extra work into advisor and support team workflows, and produced inconsistent and confusing data. Cobbled together, these tech platforms can result in an overall frustrating experience for both advisors and clients.

Avoid Confusion, Build Connections

Prudent leaders, have been working with technology partners that are equipped to help build connections, encourage client engagement and generate new business, by deploying solutions that are unified/cohesive from the outset. By creating a better advisor experience, wealth management executives are seeing the “payback" in advisor recruitment and retention. Demonstrating that they take these issues seriously and want to build an environment that streamlines workflows and gives advisors the time and resources to strengthen client relationships creates an attractive place for advisors to build a business and serve clients.

Put simply, revenue retention and growth depend, in part, on investments in technology, as well as providing advisors with the features and functionality they need to flexibly meet client demands.

Disparate platforms and programs can also lead to larger problems:

  • Advisors, managers and compliance departments face increasingly complex regulatory obligations, which can be magnified by disparate advisor applications and technology.
  • Multiple toolsets raise risks for workflow bottlenecks, inconsistencies, and errors.
  • Foregoing consolidation leads to higher operational costs and more burdensome training.
  • Pulling from data across disparate systems increases the likelihood of advisors’ “nightmare situation,” whereby they present clients with erroneous or inconsistent information or stale data.

A Wealth Management Imperative: Championing Tech Unification

Not only does tech unification address the challenge of attracting and retaining the most talented and productive advisors, it can also help firms boost their profitability and growth. This tech standardization also reduces operational inefficiencies and can even eliminate the need to reconcile multiple systems, which act as an additional drag on productivity and profitability.

In fact, advisors’ businesses are more scalable once equipped with more powerful and streamlined technology. This facilitates management of clients at a relationship level, instead of an account level. The inefficiencies created by repetitive account openings and closures are wiped away by managed account platforms that allow advisors to change allocations and manage investments within accounts as clients’ wealth grows and objectives become more complex.

Compliance and risk management can also benefit. Platform unification results in better transparency across the firm, can reduce reporting errors and inconsistencies, and simplify required training. These improvements land at the doorstep of the client, who is more satisfied with their own advisor-client experience.

Through consolidation, firms create solutions so that:

  • Changing investment complexity, goals and allocations can be managed by advisors within clients’ existing accounts.
  • Advisors are equipped to evolve with their clients over time, leading to greater share of assets under management.
  • Clients can enjoy a single experience that values their time and is a favorable reflection of advisor expertise, building trust, leading to retention and referrals.
  • Leadership teams know that the key to sustainable growth is equipping advisors with a scalable platform that optimizes the client experience.

VestmarkONE® provides wealth management firms with a technology solution that enables scalable personalization across all managed account program types and account sizes. The Vestmark platform can be implemented in a very flexible and modular way to fit each client’s unique business. Our partner firms are already enjoying time savings—up to 25% for the advisors at one firm, and 75% for the operations teams in the home office or centralized back office function*.

VestmarkONE can be deployed to consolidate all of your programs today, or to provide support on a unified technology foundation, enabling you to streamline functions and convert programs over time.

*Source: The Total Economic Impact™ of VestmarkONE®, A Forrester Consulting Study Commissioned by Vestmark, 2022.

By Vestmark Inc., Resources