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Advisors: Tech Is Good, but Please Take Your Time

December 2, 2015

New technology should be brought into an advisor’s practice only if it makes sense for the firm and integrates with existing software, and advisors need to be ready to provide plenty of hand-holding on any software geared toward customers, Reuters writes.

Advisors looking to compete with low-cost automated platforms have been embracing technology to provide efficiencies, with spending on new financial technology ranging from financial planning to customer-account integration projected to reach $2 billion this year and $5 billion by 2017, according to Aite Group data cited by Reuters. But advisors need to be wary of sales pitches and be ready to select what is right for them, caution technology consultants who spoke to the news service.

It’s essential that the software is indeed what the firm needs, and selecting the right program should be done in much the same way advisors make selections for a client’s portfolio, Neal Quon, head of the financial-technology consultancy QuonWarrene tells Reuters.

Further, the new software needs to integrate with existing technology, both within the firm itself and with its third-party partners such as custodians, fintech consultant Joel Bruckenstein points out to the news service’s readers.

Also, new tech should be a marked improvement over the “old way” of doing things, and it must be embraced by the entire staff of the firm, says Reuters. Finally, when clients are involved in any new software rollout, the firm should be prepared to guide them through installation and any and all technical issues, which advisor Josh Brown of Ritholtz Wealth Management says his firm achieved by assigning a “go-to person” for any questions related to the new technology, the news service notes.

By Alex Padalka
  • To read the Reuters article cited in this story, click here.