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Platform launches ‘5 minute’ drawdown tool

Platform launches ‘5 minute’ drawdown tool

Seccl has launched a drawdown tool for advisers, pledging to generate an illustration of a client’s retirement income in less than five minutes.

The Octopus-owned platform technology company announced today (December 2) it had launched the tool in a bid to help advisers more easily summarise the projected value and sustainability of their clients’ pension income.

It is aiming for the tool to be “one of the fastest and most efficient in the market”, pledging that the entire process takes less than five minutes if all the client information is readily available.

Sam Handfield-Jones, co-head of Seccl, said: “There are plenty of existing tools out there, offered by specialist businesses who focus entirely on illustration software. 

“But our research showed that these tools were quite expensive, had relatively long contracts, and produced illustrations that, in our view, weren’t the easiest to use or understand. 

“Advisers were telling us that it could take anything from 15 to 25 minutes to create a single illustration. And so we decided to build our own that would take a fraction of the time.”

The tool can illustrate either single uncrystallised funds pension lump sum or flexi-access drawdown withdrawal options, as well as income from general investment accounts or Isas.

As the new capability builds on Seccl’s existing accumulation tool, advisers using a platform built on Seccl technology can access the entire accumulation and decumulation process.

It is also being made available to use on a stand-alone basis for firms which do not rely on Seccl’s engine, and the firm is already in discussions with a number of advice firms looking to license the tool.

Mr Handfield-Jones added: “We’re confident that it will make life easier for all the advisers who use a Seccl-powered platform, as well as to other companies who would like to use the tool on its own.”

Liz Andrews, financial planning director of Prydis Wealth, said client illustrations were a “central component” of the advice process but could often be time consuming to produce.

She said: “The tool that Seccl has built is faster and easier to use than any other we’ve used, which creates really important time savings for us as a firm. Every few minutes saved can add up to massive efficiency gains in the long-run.”

Martin Bamford, head of client education at Informed Choice, agreed, saying that "any tools that can help financial planners explain complex issues in a simplistic way are welcome".

However, he added that any adviser who was "serious" about retirement income planning should invest a lot of time in calculating a reliable sustainable withdrawal rate as part of the wider cash flow forecasting and portfolio construction process.

imogen.tew@ft.com

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