Enhancing the Advisor Experience: Findings from our 2024 Client Survey

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At 55ip, we put the advisor at the center of everything we do. Which is why we regularly seek our clients’ input on how well we’re delivering on our mission. We also collect feedback for future initiatives we can undertake to enhance the advisor experience and value we provide. In the spirit of this, we recently completed our annual client survey of over 1,600 advisors and included questions on satisfaction, value, and product enhancements. There were a few key trends we found from talking to this audience.

1. Gaining operational efficiency continues to be the main reason advisors choose to partner with us

Question: When asked for the primary reason for partnering with 55ip, 41% of respondents chose Outsourced Implementation of Trading and Rebalancing

When you think of 55ip, you may think of tax optimization, but a partnership with us can bring operational efficiency in a few other ways. In sum, we take work off of advisors’ plates to allow them to focus on high value tasks like client relationship building and growing their business. On top of the time-savings model portfolios and automated tax-loss harvesting can bring to a practice, those strategies can be supervised by 55ip through outsourcing your trading and rebalancing.

2. Tax-smart transitions and ongoing tax-loss harvesting are the main drivers of value for advisor’s clients

Question: When asked about which 55ip capability provided the most value to their clients, 44% of respondents chose Tax-Smart Transitions and Ongoing Tax-Loss Harvesting

No client wants to see their portfolio fall in value, but tax-smart investment management reveals a silver lining by using market-based declines to add value to their portfolio. In many instances, when employing a tax-managed approach, the proper management of these losses can make a positive contribution to a client’s after-tax investment outcomes. Even brief periods of market turmoil and decline can provide opportunities to reduce the current year’s taxes and potentially increase client’s long-term wealth.

And with our tax-smart transitions that leverage the technique of tax-loss harvesting, our technology aims to minimize taxes when moving from one portfolio to another. Capitalizing on down markets can be a differentiator for you amongst your competitors and provide some good news for clients despite conditions.

3. Model portfolios are increasingly important to advisors, including models that are customized with our asset manager partners for their own client base

Question: When asked the reason for partnering with 55ip, Customization and Delivery of Model Portfolios was our largest growing selection compared to last year, with 19% choosing this as the reason to partner with 55ip

Advisors today are being asked to do more than ever for their clients. Investment management is potentially the key practice area where efficiency gains have the most potential to free up time while not diminishing the value being delivered to clients.

And one of the most transformational trends in wealth management today is the adoption of model portfolios by financial advisors. According to a Cerulli study (1) more than 55% of surveyed top-ranked advisors are utilizing models in some way in their practice. The use of model portfolios has grown rapidly in recent years and now accounts for $4.9 Trillion (2) in assets, largely due to the benefits for advisors and their clients including:

  • Positive client outcomes
  • Significant time savings
  • Higher asset growth
  • Added business value

4. As the list of financial advisors’ responsibilities increases, improving technology can save them time and help build client relationships

Question: When asked to rate the value of enhancements for our experience, three features stood out: cash management capabilities, more helpful dashboard metrics and filtering of account data, and transition progress for accounts.

This feedback aligns nicely with our product enhancements planned this year and are aimed at improving the advisor experience and client outcomes, including:  

  • Advisor Dashboard – This enhancement will provide advisors a single view across all accounts on the platform with enhanced filtering capabilities for cash management, account status, detailed alerts, and access to recent reports.  
  • Enhanced Cash Management – Throughout the year, we will enhance the cash management function in the portal. First, advisors will be able to raise cash as part of the initial account transition process and second, advisors will be able to minimize tax impact and tracking error during cash withdrawals; providing a further control over the investment decisions that best meet their client’s unique needs.  
  • A New Transition Progress Report – Will help advisors demonstrate their value by providing a quarterly view on the progress of accounts in transition.  

Each of these findings is key for us to stay on the cutting edge of fintech to support advisors’ business growth and break down barriers to financial progress. Although the survey is once a year, we continuously request feedback to make our clients’ voices heard and innovate with a purpose.

Footnotes

1 Broadridge Financial Solutions Cited in the Wall Street Journal “Model Portfolio Assets Hit Record High” November 24, 2021

2 Cerulli U.S. Asset Allocation Model Portfolios 2021

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