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Calls for better links between platforms and back-office tools grow

A lack of integration between back-office systems, platforms and digital tools is preventing advisers from making full use of technology, research from Platforum and Origo finds.

The white paper shows 17 per cent of advisers think “integration between systems” is the most significant challenge they face.

This was ranked above other challenges, including provider processes (13 per cent), staff training (11 per cent) and security issues (10 per cent).

The difficulties advisers face with technology means many resort to a hybrid approach, for example, automated primary analysis and modelling combined with manual work.

The report found platforms are focussing on improving integration with back-office systems and digital tools, for example risk-profiling or cashflow modelling tools.

However, the research shows these integrations only occur when there is adviser demand or significant volumes of business.

Can automated risk-profiling paint the full picture?

Origo managing director Anthony Rafferty says: “Systems integrations serve our industry by reducing costs and delivering data quickly and securely. Hence, rather than just being a “nice to have”, they have become the expected norm for the adviser.”

Rafferty adds: “The focus should be on making integrations more efficient, sustainable, less sporadic and more wide-spread – ultimately delivering improved outcomes for the consumers.”

Platforum research director Miranda Seath says now a good time for advisers to review their integration strategies.

She says: “Alongside the need for better and simpler integration, platforms must look at future-proofing their businesses: a flexible approach to integrations helps to keep pace with evolving technology and adviser business practices.”

The white paper follows national IFA LEBC’s recent calls for technology to help older clients manage their finances.

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