Raymond James ramps up virtual recruiting, sees accelerated digital engagement amid crisis
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Raymond James is ramping up virtual recruiting efforts and seeing accelerated advisor engagement with the firm’s technology and digital resources, according to Scott Curtis, president of Raymond James’ Private Client Group.
“As Paul Reilly (Chairman and CEO) has reiterated, our top priority during this crisis has been the health and safety of our associates, advisors, their teams and their clients,” said Curtis. “We are extremely proud that with the help of our dedicated associates, we have safely continued recruiting advisors and providing virtual and digital assistance and support to transitioning and existing advisors.”
Modeled after the firm’s popular in-person home office visits (HOVs), the virtual HOV process offers advisors a similar face-to-face experience, with access to executives, product and service areas – from technology, to marketing, to wealth planning, and more – as well as the transitions team. Prospective advisors are offered the opportunity to spread the interactive sessions across multiple days or consolidate into a single due diligence day, similar to a traditional in-person HOV. Since moving to operating remotely due to Covid-19, Raymond James has hosted over 50 virtual HOVs for interested teams or advisors. The firm also shifted “By Invitation Only” meetings for advisors and their clients to a virtual format, providing them the opportunity to meet firm executives and consult with dedicated specialists.
“Advisor interest and feedback from remote HOVs since early April has been quite positive,” continued Curtis. “We’re proud that our very personal HOV experience remains flexible and translates well to a virtual engagement. The virtual visits can’t replicate an in-person meeting at Raymond James’ headquarters campus, but as we have all adjusted to a new level of comfort with technology solutions, we’re seeing increased interest in resuming due diligence conversations, as advisors have become more comfortable with virtual meetings.”
David Paller, an advisor who with his partner Charles Isaacs ($360 million team) joined Raymond James in May, noted clients’ increased availability and familiarity with digital tools as tailwinds during his team’s recent transition. “Ironically, transitioning during a crisis has really helped us as we work with clients, many of whom are busy executives who may not have previously been as available or been able to dedicate as much attention. Raymond James’ capabilities and resources have made it incredibly easy on my clients and our team during our transition.”
With nearly 95% of Raymond James associates shifting to remote work in mid-March, the firm’s digital infrastructure supported 24/7 continuous service for advisors and clients. Digital engagement as a whole is up at the firm, a sign of increased confidence and comfort with the tools. Advisors and clients are efficiently and effectively working together virtually with the help of Raymond James’ robust, integrated technology suite and digital resources.
“Although we didn’t anticipate a pandemic, our long-term strategy and multi-year investment in mobility for advisor technology paid off over the past two months, when advisors and clients have needed it most,” said Vin Campagnoli, chief information officer. “Despite operating fully remotely, advisors have had the full capabilities of their offices, which allowed them to focus on their clients during these extraordinary circumstances. It is not surprising that many of them have been able to continue growing and adding relationships during this time.”
Highlights of accelerated adoption and utilization:
- Usage of Client Access, the firm’s online account access and collaboration tool, grew over 50%, with mobile app use up 82% since the beginning of the year
- Usage of Advisor Mobile, the firm’s integrated mobile app for access to client information, CRM, texting and social communications, has grown over 80% since offices closed
- Traffic on advisor websites, which feature the firm’s commentary, insights, webinars and advisors’ original content, is up 62%
“As we live through these difficult times, I am grateful we made this move,” said Debbie Juran, an advisor with $150 million in client assets who joined Raymond James in January. “We are able to work remotely and seamlessly. The accessibility, level of expertise and passion to ‘get it done’ that we have experienced while working remotely is a testament to the level of professionalism Raymond James promotes top to bottom.”
About Raymond James Financial, Inc.
Raymond James Financial, Inc. (NYSE: RJF) is a leading diversified financial services company providing private client group, capital markets, asset management, banking and other services to individuals, corporations and municipalities. The company has approximately 8,100 financial advisors. Total client assets are $828 billion (as of 5/20/2020). Public since 1983, the firm is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol RJF. Additional information is available at www.raymondjames.com.