There’s no debate that technology plays a critical role in enabling independent advisors to run their practices more effectively, but should operational efficiency be the overriding factor you consider when weighing the benefit of a technology investment?
After more than three decades working in the advisor technology space, I’d argue that if you’re looking at technology primarily as an efficiency play, you’re missing the big picture. Of course, it’s true that technology can yield significant benefits in terms of streamlined processes and increased operational efficiency, but it can be really hard to recoup a significant investment in technology when measured in terms of efficiency alone.
Particularly for small and mid-sized practices, a better lens through which to view technology investment is how it enables growth. If you can use technology to significantly grow your business in a relatively short timeframe, it will be much easier to justify the up-front investment.
CRM as a growth driver
A great example of how technology can help grow your business is customer relationship management (CRM) software. By providing a central repository for client and prospect information, CRM can help you manage basic workflows to achieve greater consistency, visibility and accountability across your team.
Not only do CRM-enabled workflow improvements allow you to offer better client service and outcomes at scale, they also help make client interactions more meaningful by quickly providing your team access to important details about your clients, their goals and their preferences. So, while CRM can enable significant efficiency gains for your practice, a big part of its value can be measured in deeper client relationships, better client outcomes and accelerated growth for your business. If you’re looking to transition your practice or nearing retirement, CRM can also play an important role in making your practice more valuable to prospective buyers who would be able to easily leverage information about your clients and business workflows without having to start from scratch.
Choosing the right tech to fuel growth
As with any technology investment, a CRM system’s benefits are best realized when integrated with other tools, such as document management, financial planning and portfolio management. For many advisors, however, choosing the right solutions and effectively tying them together to meet the unique needs of their practice can be daunting.
At TAN, we help advisors in our network choose the best technology options to fuel growth of their practice. We understand that each independent practice has unique needs, so we don’t try to force fit you into a pre-set tech stack. Instead, we’ll help you look at your business and decide which of the best-in-class tools we’ve curated on our platform will best support your goals – so you don’t have to figure everything out on your own. We’ll provide recommendations and best practices to help you use technology not only to make your business more efficient, but also to deliver better outcomes, achieve greater peace of mind and grow your business.
Much as we at TAN believe that money is not a goal unto itself but a tool to enable people to live lives full of meaning and gratitude, we also view technology as a means to an end – a powerful tool that can enable advisors to grow their business and ultimately to deliver greater impact for their clients.