Concept Financial Planning has invested heavily in technology to enable us to deliver a consistent client experience and allow us to spend more time with our clients and less time on routine admin tasks.
Choosing a new platform is not a decision we have taken lightly. We have been researching the market for the past 12 months to find the most suitable provider to fit with our business model.
We were pleased initially with the platform provider we have been using, although we believe its pace of change and future vision of the market has not developed enough. There were some fundamental requirements we needed that were not meeting our standards for clients and were not in line with the RDR, plus they raised charges while increasing profits.
The Wealthtime team spent time with Concept in getting to know and appreciate our business model and the way we work with our clients. This is paramount to us as service delivery is key for our clients. Wealthtime share the same beliefs as we do in how we like to treat our clients and they believe in what we do.
The criteria and process we used when assessing platform providers included:
- Good technical support from the provider
- Quality customer service to match our client-focused proposition
- Functionality (ease of doing business)
- Usefulness of online tools
- Quality of reports to feed into our financial plans
- Choice of funds
- Tax wrappers
- Costs, charging structure and transparency
It is essential that we view our clients’ investments as a whole as this is core to our financial planning proposition. Wealthtime has a range of tax wrappers that suit out clients. It also gives us the ability to dictate what asset classes go into the tax wrappers with ease, which we felt was core to delivering true financial planning to our clients.
It offers a simple unbundled charging structure from which to work and this is one which is easy for our clients to understand. Transparency is key for us and we know exactly how much the cost is from rebates to fund managers and other charges. Wealthtime offers any fund in the market on their platform and does not exclude funds on the basis that they do not pay rebates.
In terms of development and design, we understand exactly where Wealthtime is in the process and the vision for implementing facilities that will aid us and other users of their wrap in terms of efficiency through technology.
We completely understand that some people may not have heard of Wealthtime but it offers fantastic service with a strong proposition offering value to us and our clients. We firmly believe this platform positions Concept well in readiness for the RDR.
Paul Richardson is managing director of Concept Financial Planning