How important are your clients to you? In the financial industry we can often find ourselves answering this question in a multitude of ways. Are we working in our client’s best interest? Are we providing all the correct data to them? Do we really understand our client’s needs?
The financial planning industry has often come under a lot of scrutiny from the public focusing mainly on ethical behavior (or lack there of). Part of this attention relates to the strong views about the quality of relationship between financial planners and their clients. We all understand the importance of not only these views, but the true reality of the situation with our clients as well.
A large indicator of a good relationship lies in the quality of client engagement, with clients valuing this engagement far more then financial planners initially realised. We often find that practices are spending more time on backend administration and compliance, rather than actually talking and meeting with clients face to face. This can be a major problem, especially if you consider the fact that client engagement and communication is at the top of most clients’ lists to build up trust with their advisers.
The benefits gained from effective client engagement can be extensive including; client loyalty, larger referrals, building trust, and not to mention the fulfillment of compliance duties. The client review can often be the perfect opportunity to execute this client engagement; however can more often than not be one of the biggest pain points for your staff. Ensuring you have all your ducks in a row for client reviews can often be time consuming and stressful. Sometimes it almost seems redundant, when you are spending more time preparing for the client, than you actually send face to face with them in the review.
So why are we spending so much time on administration? Lack of process is the number one culprit. Conduct a simple exercise and you will find that not only your administration staff, but also the entire team, are more than likely using ineffective ways to get things done. Due to no fault of there own, these are probably processes that have manifested over a number of years to cope under stressful times, and as we all know that humans are creatures of habit those habits can sometimes be hard to break. We find that processes can usually be streamlined and made extensively much simpler to operate, once these issues have been addressed.
Secondly, is the lack of utilisation of technology for this task. The combination of streamlined processes and utilising your CRM, will in turn make the whole client review process much less painful. We have seen dramatic results in practices, where the document preparation time for the client reviews was reduced from 120 minutes, down to just 20 minutes. Looking at the pain points for the practice was important, but the defining factor was how the technology in the practice could assist in solving and helping those pain points. Your XPLAN system will be much more capable with assisting with these kinds of tasks than you first believed, and your key to efficiency lies in maximizing that potential.
The practices that we see increasing their profit and efficiency are the ones willing to master the technology in order for them to focus on their clients. In the end this is what all well informed clients want; strong client engagement that builds trust and solid relationships.
If you would like to learn more about how you can improve your client review process contact us today on 1300 720 276 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.