Technology: The advisor’s ultimate toolbox

Technology

Technology: The advisor’s ultimate toolbox

Technology in the hands of the advisor can transform a practice.

The saying goes that a craftsman is only as good as the tools he or she uses. Similarly, technology in the hands of the independent advisor can transform a practice – elevating capabilities, adding scalability and helping advisors be more efficient with their time and resources.

Do it yourself

For practically every improvement or enhancement you want to make to your practice, you are likely to find a solution in technology. If you want to make more efficient use of your time, mobile devices like smartphones, tablets and laptops allow access to information wherever you are. Client data and account information, market research and analysis, and even financial planning tools and proposal generators are literally right in the palm of your hand.

And the people who provide the information and data recognize the trend toward mobility in the advising industry, resulting in a number of apps for smartphones and tablets designed to help advisors access their own information (like the LogMeIn app that allows you to connect with your computer from your smartphone or any other computer) and stay informed (like the Bloomberg app).

Making contact

Advisors wanting to enhance, track and, in some cases, automate client communication are turning to contact resource management (CRM) software options.

“Truly the most revolutionary technology in the industry is the combination of email and a CRM system,” says Mark Thompson, a Melbourne, Florida advisor.

A client management system makes documenting and accessing ongoing client communications easy and automatic. And most client management systems today are fully customizable and can incorporate your logo and brand in all your email and print communications, including statements, confirms and agreements.

“Using a CRM can really help any advisor be more productive and efficient,” says Eliot Weissberg, branch manager of The Investors Center, Inc. in Avon, Connecticut. “And many allow you to integrate other programs and apps – for instance, scanning software so you can store and track documents with your client communications.”

Build to scale

Ultimately, the role of technology in any advisory practice should be to help the practice grow. And in today’s business environment, the only way advisors can successfully create scalability in their practice is by reclaiming the time they spend on administrative duties to spend more time with clients and build stronger relationships. Having the tools to access information and client accounts instantly, manage client communications and deliver a consistent client experience can help advisors do more with their time. And the technology to do that is available right now.

“Our team has been focused on tech for more than 20 years,” says Phillip Rademacher, a Raymond James Financial Services advisor in Lawrence, Kansas. “As the industry has evolved, so has our use of available technology. Contact management software, trading platforms and mobile devices have allowed us to serve more customers and keep track of more data. At the same, we have been able to deliver more consistent results across all our client types.” 



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