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The seven mistakes to avoid when selecting financial technology

Financial advisors face countless challenges in their daily practices – especially in this day and age. 

In order to implement a broader technology strategy at your firm, you must approach it from a technology as well as a business standpoint. Analyze how your business can benefit from the use of technology.

The 21st century is ushering in digital transformations, disrupting the way advice is delivered. Investors are smart, savvy and want quick and easy access to their wealth portfolios. When it is time to select new technologies to keep up with the demands of these prospects, mistakes can be made and problems overlooked. 

I recently had the opportunity to catch up with T3’s Joel Bruckenstein and AdvisorEngine®’s Craig Ramsey. Bruckenstein and Ramsey shared with us the seven biggest mistakes people make when evaluating and selecting technology – and how you can avoid them.

Bruckenstein-01 Bruckenstein is a guru on applied technology for financial professionals and publishes Technology Tools for Today (T3) -- he hosts the annual T3 Advisor Conference, the premier technology conference for independent financial advisors. For over two decades, Bruckenstein has advised financial service firms of all sizes on improving their technologies, processes and workflows.
Ramsey-01 Ramsey is a FinTech futurist and business builder. Throughout his career, he has worked in consulting, investment banking, strategy and operations leadership roles at Accenture, BofA Merrill Lynch, UBS and WisdomTree. At AdvisorEngine, he leads the executive management committee and keeps the company aligned.

MISTAKE #1: Not thinking holistically about your technology stack



“Many, many advisors focus on solving one immediate pain point…but you need to think holistically!”

“By taking time to consider how your needs will evolve as you scale, you will save yourself time, money and frustration in the future. Your technology stack should be flexible and modular - allowing you to adapt over time.”

MISTAKE #2: Only looking at established technology providers



“If you’re not evaluating emerging FinTech companies, you’re missing out on innovation.”

“It’s not just the well-known technology firms that are bringing new products to market. By widening your lens on who you evaluate, your clients and your business can benefit.”

MISTAKE #3: Focusing on cost instead of benefit



“Selecting technology vendors on price is not a winning strategy. Your time is too valuable, and your client experience is too important.”

Costs are easier to quantify than benefits, so many people default purely to price rather than thinking strategically. Instead, consider how technology partners can bolster your brand, enhance your value proposition and save you time to improve your bottom line.”

MISTAKE #4: Neglecting to gather employee perspectives



“If you’re not asking your younger employees to evaluate technology, you’re doing yourself a disservice. Include them in the process.

With that said…on the other side of the spectrum…don’t just throw an intern at it!”

“Capturing cross-generational perspectives helps ensure that your technology decisions are both forward-thinking and practical. 

Some of the best creative ideas come from people who are new to the industry because they don’t see barriers or constraints in the same way that experienced practitioners do.”

MISTAKE #5: Believing that all back-office providers are created equal



“Not every broker dealer or custodian integrates well with modern technology.”

“Before joining a new company or starting your own wealth management firm, make sure to investigate technology solutions before your taking your next step.”

MISTAKE #6: Brushing aside security



“Don’t forget to consider security when selecting new technology providers.” 

“Performing security diligence on technology providers is an important activity.

Equally as important is adding processes at your firm to mitigate employee or client actions that introduce security risks. Many security issues are caused by unintentional human behavior.”

MISTAKE #7: Thinking of technology as a project instead of a journey



“I hate to break it to you, but technology decisions never end. That certainly doesn’t mean you should be opening up your tech stack every year…but your eyes need to be open, or you will fall behind.”

“Leading wealth management firms are always looking to iterate and improve how they use technology across the wealth management value chain.”

Many advisors find the following to be their greatest areas of need:

  • Client Relationship Management (CRM)
  • Onboarding
  • Automated Billing
  • Third party integrations
  • Serving small balance accounts  

AdvisorEngine provides holistic solutions for all of these needs, helping you avoid all of these mistakes. We build powerful and intuitive technology for financial advisors - let us help you embrace innovation without disrupting your business.

Our team is made up of enterprise technologists, data scientists, designers, futurists and former financial advisors working together to create the future of financial advice. Let our team, be your team and help you deliver your best advice. SEE FOR YOURSELF

This blog is sponsored by AdvisorEngine Inc. The information, data and opinions in this commentary are as of the publication date, unless otherwise noted, and subject to change. This material is provided for informational purposes only and should not be considered a recommendation to use AdvisorEngine or deemed to be a specific offer to sell or provide, or a specific invitation to apply for, any financial product, instrument or service that may be mentioned. Information does not constitute a recommendation of any investment strategy, is not intended as investment advice and does not take into account all the circumstances of each investor. Opinions and forecasts discussed are those of the author, do not necessarily reflect the views of AdvisorEngine and are subject to change without notice. AdvisorEngine makes no representations as to the accuracy, completeness and validity of any statements made and will not be liable for any errors, omissions or representations. As a technology company, AdvisorEngine provides access to award-winning tools and will be compensated for providing such access. AdvisorEngine does not provide broker-dealer, custodian, investment advice or related investment services.

Justin Wilkinson

Justin Wilkinson

Justin Wilkinson is a relationship builder and business development professional who is dedicated to establishing successful long-term partnerships with clients and industry partners alike. Applying his experience from both the institutional wealth management industry and his entrepreneurial ventures, he brings a unique perspective to client and partner relationships. Justin is responsible for accelerating new business growth at AdvisorEngine and helping our clients achieve strategic goals through technology-driven initiatives.


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