In 2019, we launched the Enterprise Platform of AdvicePay. As we continued developing and customizing the platform, we started to hear a recurring request from many firms looking into onboarding with AdvicePay. They needed a way to collect planning fees that was compliant with industry regulations and they needed a way to streamline the process for ensuring that advisors were delivering the services promised to their client in the initial financial planning agreement. We see time and time again that firms want to create a seamless digital experience for their advisors so that they can stay focused on best serving their clients. Nobody wanted to track pieces of the financial planning process in multiple systems. It was clear that this caused inefficiencies for firms and their advisors. It was also making it really difficult to scale fee-for-service financial planning within their organization.
As we spoke to firms, we felt the pain of the various departments in charge of confirming that there was a financial planning agreement in place prior to payments getting collected. Then having to manually track the deliverables to ensure clients were delivered the services promised in the initial financial planning agreement. As a company, we saw an opportunity to solve this problem. We wanted to give firms a way to track the entire fee-for-service process in one platform. After adding eSignature capabilities with HelloSign in 2018 and an integration with DocuSign last year, we were thrilled to announce our deliverables tracking module this month.
The Biggest Challenges That We Solved With This Release:
The Ability to See Financial Planning Agreements, Invoices/Payments, and the Deliverables the Advisor Provided to a Client in One Place.
Firms are now able to ensure that each step of the financial planning process is accounted for -- agreements are signed, clients have been invoiced or paid, and the advisor provided the services to that client. Enterprises can feel confident that all required documentation and evidence of services is in place for fees that are being collected, preventing fee-for-no-service.
The Ability to Have Different Types of Deliverables Depending On Evidence Needed, Review Team Required, or Due Date.
We understand that depending on what service is being offered that the deliverable might change. For example, an ongoing financial planning engagement might require more frequent deliverables to be submitted and the evidence can simply be a screenshot of recent meeting notes each time. Whereas a one-time financial plan might not be due for 6-12 months, and the evidence that is required will depend on what was agreed to in the initial financial planning agreement. We also see that the review teams or compliance departments for different services like 401k or 403b may vary. Those teams want to be able to easily see deliverables that are specific to their teams.
The Ability to Have the Most up-to-Date Information on All Deliverables for Both Home Office and Advisors.
Regardless of if a client paid by ACH, CC, or Online Check Deposit, if it’s services related to AUM, hourly, project, or a subscription, or if a fee wasn’t even collected, home office is able to see every deliverable that needs to be submitted by their advisors. At any point, advisors and home office have total transparency into what needs to be delivered or what has missed a due date, giving your Enterprise the confidence that you know services that were promised are being delivered to your clients.
Automated Notifications to Alert Firms and Their Advisors When a Deliverable Is Due.
This was being tracked in different systems, causing firms to look in multiple places to see their open deliverables. The notifications were not automated and were sent out manually. Firms can now set up alerts to notify firm stakeholders and/or advisors directly when a deliverable assigned to them is due within 30 days, becomes overdue, or an open deliverable has been created for them.
The Ability to Upload Proof of Services Delivered in Multiple Formats - PDF, Word Document (.Docx), Screenshot (.PNG or .JPG), URL, and Advisor Attestation.
All of the firms we talked to had multiple types of deliverables that needed to be tracked. It was clear that to make this a functional feature to firms, we needed to give them options to upload forms, documentation from different financial planning software, and more.
Reporting For Firms and Advisors to Review the Status of Their Deliverables
Firms can now set up alerts to notify firm stakeholders and/or advisors directly when a deliverable assigned to them is due within 30 days, becomes overdue, or when an open deliverable has been created for them.
API Automation Options
All firms were looking to reduce their manual processes. Our API ensures updates and deliverables can integrate with an internal system if needed. Firms can assign Deliverables to advisors automatically, or they can pull the evidence that advisors submitted for that deliverable and save it into their centralized storage solution. View our Deliverables API Documentation here.
What’s next? We keep going.
As our industry continues to make the exciting move toward offering more fee-for-service financial planning services, we are working hard on developing the AdvicePay platform every day. We believe this trend is the future and is just getting started.
“From the very beginning, we designed AdvicePay to be so much more than just a payment processing platform. The wealth management industry is always evolving, with business and regulatory requirements changing constantly, so our nimble, agile, and flexible technology foundation is once again proving its strategic importance with the release of Deliverables.We look forward to working with our enterprise clients to further tailor and customize the platform so they can continue to grow, compete and succeed in an ever-increasingly complex and competitive industry.” - Alan Moore, CFP®, CEO & Co-Founder of AdvicePay.
Want to learn more about Deliverables?
Get a full overview of our Deliverables feature here.
To learn more about Deliverables and begin using it at your Enterprise firm, please reach out to your Relationship Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org!
Posted by Cassie Jackson
Cassie helps prospective AdvicePay users understand how they can get the most out of the platform in their firm. Before joining our team, Cassie worked for a financial and HR services business, putting her Business Finance degree from Montana State University (go Cats!) to work — so helping people is in her blood. This doesn’t stop after office hours, by the way. Cassie is an active volunteer in Bozeman nonprofits, and, in 2017, founded a nonprofit called, Suffer Out Loud, focused on reducing suicide rates in Montana. When she’s not working or volunteering, Cassie and her family enjoy camping and (real) hiking, all around Montana and beyond, reaching 15,000 ft. in 2016 on a hike to Machu Picchu.