For RIAs and most other businesses, 2020 was a year of transition and one that presented many challenges. Many of these challenges will continue and will represent key business priorities for RIAs in 2021.
Virtual meetings became a necessity in 2020 in dealing with the effects of the pandemic. This trend wasn’t a new one and will continue into 2021 and beyond. The ability to conduct productive meetings virtually is advantageous for both advisors and their clients. For advisors, it allows you to work from anywhere and to work with clients regardless of their location.
For clients, virtual meetings expand their universe of advisors and allows them to keep valued advisor relationships regardless of where they might be located. The key here is for RIAs to ensure they have the right tech tools to conduct the most productive virtual meetings possible.
Improved client digital experiences
Another tech trend that was underway in the advisory world that gained momentum in 2020 was the trend toward improved client digital experiences. We see this continuing into 2021 and beyond.
Client digital experiences can include an app to access their data and communicate with your firm. This experience can also pertain to the client portal on your firm’s website. Clients value the ability to access their data on your site and interface with their advisor digitally.
Improved digital experiences are becoming increasingly important as the next generation of clients emerge from the largest intergenerational wealth transfer over the next couple of decades. RIAs looking to service this next generation of clients must be mindful of this offering in their practice and invest in outstanding and robust client digital experiences.
The tech that works together
RIAs are becoming more conscious of utilizing tech that works together. Instead of having software for financial planning, another program that analyzes investments and another one that manages client information, today’s firms want tech that allows all of their tools to communicate and work together.
This combined integration is not just a “nice to have” for advisory firms. With the trend of remote work expected to continue, at least in part post-pandemic, tech solutions allowing you and your colleagues to work more efficiently in the office or remote are likely to become a requirement to stay competitive. Don’t worry if picking a tech stack seems overwhelming, we wrote about how to think through the process.Tools like AssetBook’s Pulse work with various data aggregators and help integrate your client’s portfolio information into other software tools you use to run your business. Having a smart technology strategy across your entire business is a mandatory investment in 2021 for RIA firms of all sizes.