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Can Financial Planning software make your business more profitable?

Financial Planning software can make you money. It's an indisputable fact. "But you sell XPLAN support to your clients?" I hear you say. Well yes, this is true. Practice Dynamix started as an XPLAN support and XPLAN customisation business, but as we've built the business from the ground up, working with clients Australia-wide from both big corporate and small boutique, own-AFSL versus Dealer Group, we've further realised that at the heart of all good financial planning firms there sits a multi-faceted software solution that has been integrated properly. In the businesses that we see who are succeeding, every user or team member uses the CRM day-in and day-out, for simple tasks like recording a clients personal information, to more complex issues like comprehensive portfolio modelling, the automating of Fee Disclosure Statements or providing a client with an exceptional and seamless portfolio access and knowledge article experience.

Cut your staff overheads

OK, it's not rocket science. If your team can be more efficient, you need less people on your books. This means lower wage costs, lower insurance, less rent, lower IT costs, less workcover and less desk space.

We all know this in principle, but many businesses we meet with initially have no idea how to actually implement this. The key is to first automate and reduce the amount of manual internal communications within your team by using Task and Thread templates. Assess what each member of your team does on a day-to-day basis, and if a communication or workflow is communicated about more than once per day use your software to build a thread, task or workflow (and you can do this on most financial planning software solutions, not just XPLAN). The key to this is ensuring that you use a system that allows you to very simply allocate and communicate about a workflow item using prefilled data, allows you to easily attach supporting documentation, tracks the time taken automatically, and allows users to update other users or managers of the status of the workflow item through the simple tick of a box or a dropdown field.

Invest in Customisation

In our role as an XPLAN customisation specialist, we would setup threads for every single administration function performed on a client in the business, ensure that the right person is allocated the correct role for that client and then each time the same tasks is performed this can be allocated to the right people using approximately a 2-3 click process using a uniform process. There is no need to email team members complicated instructions, update spreadsheets, or have people follow different, perhaps inefficient processes. By investing the time in the templates you can streamline the need to communicate, ensure that everywhere is following the same process and more easily manage time taken to perform tasks and understand where/who time is being spent. The flow on effect of this efficiency is that team members have more capacity for other projects, providing either a better service to existing clients, room to grow into other tasks or the ability to downsize team and allocate existing tasks.

Templating = ROI

Financial advisers love templating their SOA's and review documents, but are often reticent to spend the money templating their threads and documents. The shame of this is that putting systems, processes and templates in place significantly increases the resale potential of your business. At a time where the value of a financial planning client is falling from the old 3X model to a 2x and even a dollar for dollar valuation, the businesses we see sold that have good templates and systems in place are still achieving valuations at the higher end of the sales band.

Whether you use Xplan, Coin, Midwinter or one of the other many software solutions for the financial planning industry, spending the time setting it up to operating efficiently will return for you ten fold. Provided you use it! Talk to Practice Dynamix today about XPLAN Support, Xplan Customisation and Xplan Consulting, as well as Practice Management Consulting and Practice Development on 1300 032 023.

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