Competent staff is priority when outsourcing to a platform

The 452 financial advisers surveyed for the firm’s Review of Platform Service study, said if they were choosing to use a platform to manage their clients’ investments, they wanted to know it was being run properly.

Systems reliability was voted the second-highest priority in this year’s survey, up from fifth place in 2012. Timely processing of client applications was rated top last year, slipping down to fifth place in the 2013 survey.

The Eight Happinesses: what categories advisers were asked to vote on

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Provider perception

Transition and implementation process

Administration of new business

Administration of existing business

Staff perception

Platform design and management

Reporting perception

E-business capability

Source: Defaqto

Fraser Donaldson, insight analyst of wealth management for Defaqto, said: “Last year was about business restructure ahead of RDR and for many advisers putting a platform at the heart of their investment proposition was a priority, so it was no surprise that last year the most important service aspect was timely processing of new client applications.

“Now, platform users are becoming more focused on ensuring they receive a reasonable level of support from knowledgeable staff, rather than simply processing information quickly.”

Adviser view

Scott Gallacher, director of Rowley Turton in Leicester, said: “In our experience, it is not normally the staff that are the issue. It is more of a problem if the provider has a process-driven approach. Improvement of their computer systems could make a difference.”