In a world in which finance companies are subject to higher levels of scrutiny from the regulators, companies are increasingly looking to protect themselves and their clients from any breach of the rules.
As a result, there is increasing interest in software for financial advisors.
Recent surveys have shown a sharp increase in the use of such software over the past decade. Companies see the software as one way of assuring compliance with the Financial Conduct Authority’s rules.
There are a number of companies providing this kind of software for financial advisors. For example software for financial advisors can be arranged through Intelliflo.
Industry experts suggest that more and more firms are moving their practices to full planning models, rather than using the software sparingly, or simply for tracking back office operations.
The introduction of such software across all aspects of a company’s operations not only offers protection to clients, but also helps the advisor to explain and justify investments which have been made. It will also help to explain all aspects of that investment, including aims and risk assessment.
Compliance with fiduciary responsibility, which the regulator places on advisors, can also be highlighted by planning software.
This is important, as the FCA is increasingly looking at the suitability of certain classes of investment, and continues to be concerned about company cloning. Should a company be investigated, a planning programme will offer the first line of defence, as it will provide the documentation to justify any investment on behalf of any nominated client, and explain the risk associated with a particular portfolio.
This is precisely the rigour that the authorities are looking for in a financial advice company. Consequently, any debate about the cost of the planning software is almost made redundant.
The introduction of such software sends a message to the regulator that the company is serious about the needs of the client, rather than looking at an end result for an investment.
More and more companies are looking at bespoke software, rather than relying on generic planning tools, and this is also appreciated by the regulators. It also has the advantage of eliminating human error as much as possible.
Such compliance-friendly technology demonstrates the firm’s oversight, and will aid any compliance request from the authorities.