Medium is as crucial as message

• They are on track to meet their agreed plan objectives.

• The risk of their portfolio and arrangements are still suitable.

• Investments have delivered value for the risk taken.

• They are not paying any unnecessary tax on the portfolio.

• Products remain suitable for their needs.

• Fees and charges are correct.

• There are no unregulated investments.

• They have followed previous advice.

• Any changes are required to the portfolio.

Covering this kind of ground as part of a well-presented plan in which consideration has been given to design as well as content, is so much more powerful and accessible than a sheaf of paper statements centred on product performance.

For most clients, if you have accurately agreed their risk profile they will still be on track so long as their investments have remained consistently of the right risk profile too.

Key points

  • Some firms are feeling the pressure under Mifid II requirements
  • It could provide more of a catalyst for change than RDR
  • The medium used to contact clients can prove as important as the message

The resulting review, therefore, even if investment performance has not been strong, can be positive: “You’re OK, you’re still on plan.”

Helping reassure clients to stay the course in good markets and bad is clearly an important part of the value that good advisers add – a coach to hold them accountable and help prevent bad decisions.

While it is not easy to quantify, it is hugely valuable to clients, particularly if the medium is as well thought through as the message.  

Ben Goss is chief executive of Dynamic Planner