November 01, 2018Why It's Time for Advisors to Fix Their Onboarding Process

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This blog was originally published in Wealth Professional Canada.


Getting a new client through the door should be a celebratory moment, but with so many advisors using outdated onboarding systems the process can often be slow and frustrating. What should’ve been a great opportunity to impress a new client and create a connection has suddenly turned into an awkward meeting – all because the advisor’s onboarding software is not up to scratch.


Digitally onboarding clients has proven to be a mediocre customer experience at best,” says Harold Reimer, Sales Director, Appway Canada. “Client onboarding is a critical phase when advisors have the chance to convert a prospective customer into a client and begin a long-term and trusted relationship. Because time and efficiency problems can harm an advisor’s reputation, these issues need to be taken seriously.”


Speed is an important criterion in creating a positive customer experience when it comes to client onboarding. But competency is just as essential. With cutting edge onboarding software, tasks that were previously manual become fully automated, leading to decreased process time and a 90% reduction in errors.


Roubini ThoughtLab’s latest study, Wealth and Asset Management 2022: The Path to Digital Leadership, discovered that, by 2020, increasing numbers of financial services firms will be adding to the technology-enabled tools they currently provide. The change in philosophy will enable firms to create the seamless digital experience that customers, both individual and institutional, now expect.


“And guess which digital tools the companies plan to roll out first?” says Reimer. “Digital client onboarding. With this insight, it’s clear that digital onboarding is becoming an industry standard that’s essential in every segment of financial services.”


All executives interviewed for the study agree that it’s now essential to adopt an outside-in perspective, which means understanding exactly what clients want and offering it in the channels they prefer to use. What results is an effortless, client-centric, and omnichannel interaction.


“By implementing the right digital solution, firms can apply this outside-in approach,” says Reimer. “Advisors, for example, can provide their clients with a dedicated digital concierge to engage with them on their terms. Meanwhile, retail banks can offer clients a ready-to-go shopping experience in line with the online experience they get when using popular vendors like Amazon, Apple, and Netflix.”


Creating a positive experience during onboarding should be a top priority with all potential clients, however, some individuals do expect - and demand - more.


“The truth is advisors need to go above and beyond to accommodate their high net worth clients,” says Reimer. “HNWIs have higher expectations, and if they’re not satisfied, they’ll go elsewhere to have their expectations met. Users of our application have managed to open complex relations with high net worth individuals less than a day. While market survey numbers paint a gloomy picture of average onboarding times, our customers’ results have stood out impressively.”


Learn more about client onboarding for banking

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Written byJoe RosengartenJournalist with Wealth Professional Canada