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IFAs: 9 ways Process Bliss can lessen your administrative burden (and let you spend more time with clients)
Clients engage you for your skills and financial knowledge. You want to provide them with the best advice for their situation, which means taking the time to truly understand their motivations and goals. But all too often business administration takes time and attention away from your client facing work. Last year it was found that a third of advisor clients on the online wrap platform Nucleus spent more than 40% of their time on admin work. The same research found that only one in seven advisers spent more than 40% of their time with clients.
Bearing that in mind, it’s no wonder that back office administration was found to be the top challenge for 32% of advisors, while business management was cited as a key challenge for 29%. The mounting compliance burden, the difficulty hiring and training new staff and the need to keep on top of daily tasks were all cited as reasons that contributed to advisors’ administrative burdens.
The reduced time interacting with clients is not only a short term problem. As clients are becoming more financially savvy, thanks in part to increased consumer awareness and the availability of information online, advisors are finding they need to demonstrate their value to retain clients. But how can you show your worth when your time is being taken up by unprofitable activities, instead of concentrating on building client relationships? How can you explain the value you provide to your clients when it seems that the majority of your time is spent performing administrative tasks like chasing and filing paperwork?
The answer is to address how you run your business and to take steps to streamline your activities. Process Bliss has already enabled financial services businesses to improve their productivity and reclaim precious time. Here’s an overview of how we help.
Documenting repeatable activities gives you reassurance
Writing out processes for all the repeatable work you do means that any crucial steps (especially ones relating to regulatory compliance) aren’t forgotten. Activities like onboarding new clients, carrying out a pension review or collecting information about a client’s mortgage situation can be written out on Process Bliss so they act as a reference guide. The next time you onboard a new client it’s a smooth and consistent process, and you feel reassured you are compliant.
Consistency improves efficiency & your service to clients
Having a “how to” guide for all your repeatable work increases efficiency. Not only that – consistency is key in creating a great customer experience. If clients always receive quick and thorough responses in their dealings with you, they will be more likely to rate your service and recommend you to others. And as you may already know from past experience, word of mouth marketing has been shown to be the most valuable in service based businesses.
Process Bliss makes process useful
The software doesn’t just let you document your processes – it allows you to use them in your day-to-day work too. You can create checklists so that you can track progress through your tasks, and those of your team, and keep up to date about what has to happen next. Process Bliss alerts you about upcoming deadlines and even allows you to prioritise the work on your list so you can focus on the most urgent tasks.
Quickly identify issues and erase inefficiencies
If you’re focused on the operational aspects of your day-to-day work you can overlook recurring problems and inefficiencies. Process Bliss lets you compare how the same process is progressing across all of your clients on a report, which is useful in keeping on top of your current workload. But this report also serves to highlight steps that may be causing you issues. In Process Bliss there is the option to say that steps weren’t done, which means you can see at a glance what needs your attention. This information also suggests where the process could be improved, which in turn streamlines your work and frees up more of your valuable time.
Keep on top of your regulatory requirements
The regulatory requirements of financial businesses are constantly changing. It can be tough to make sure all of your activities are continually complying with the latest regulations. The benefit of documenting your repeatable processes is that you only need to incorporate the necessary changes into the template once – whether it’s adding in an extra form clients need to complete or amending a document’s wording. When you next perform this process you just follow the new steps and all of your clients will remain compliant.
Stop spending time hunting for paperwork or client information
You don’t need us to tell you that there’s an abundance of information, forms, documents and data to keep a track of in the world of financial advice. You may already have systems to manage all this, such as document storage or customer relationship management (CRM) systems. Process Bliss integrates with over 2000 pieces of software through Zapier, so you can send data between systems automatically without having to type it out by hand over and over again.
Process Bliss can replace the need for hiring admin support…
A report from last year found that being able to focus on planning and client relationships were the biggest draws to outsourcing administrative work, while cost was the biggest barrier. Hiring an assistant can free up your time, but can also create its own issues, such as having to invest time in training and line managing an employee, not to mention finding a suitable candidate in the first place. Efficiencies created by software mean that this is a low cost, low risk alternative to engaging in-person support.
…however if you do hire, Process Bliss takes care of employee training
Training a new member of staff takes time and effort. You may also have to adjust to the fact that you are no longer in control of absolutely everything that goes on in your business. But if the way you do things is already documented, training a new employee is a case of running them through the written processes and assigning them the tasks you want to be taken off your hands. Process Bliss lets you add detailed instructions, files and links so that staff initially unfamiliar with your way of working can get up to speed quickly. You can feel reassured that the work will be done the way that you define. It also means that it’s quicker to hire and train new staff to allow you to scale up your business if or when desired.
Automate your regular reviews and meetings
When you’re advising many clients at the same time it can be challenging to ensure that reviews and meetings happen when they should. Process Bliss allows you to schedule recurring tasks so that you’re alerted when the next review needs to happen. Or, if you live in your calendar, you can use the Zapier integration to automatically create a task from your review process the day before the meeting has been scheduled. This way, you’re ready for every client engagement and have all the information you need to hand.
Reducing your administrative burden may not be the most exciting activity, but putting in place a system that enables you to better manage your workload and create efficiencies will allow you to spend more time with your clients. But the benefits don’t end there. It’s been shown that emotionally connecting with clients means they rate an advisor’s performance more highly. Giving yourself back the time to build a personal connection with your clients will pay off for your business in the long run and ultimately make it more successful.