23 Nov Software implementation guide for financial institutions
Many wealth management firms rely on legacy platforms for much of their operations. While these might be a comfortable option that has worked well for years, the industry has significantly changed since their conception. So why fix it if it isn’t broken? Because companies can lose productivity and customers.
At a time when traditional wealth management platforms are showing their limitations, it’s essential to embrace innovative financial technologies. While this can be a challenge, the benefits, such as data centralization in the cloud, cannot be underestimated. Resistance to change within the industry has already resulted in lost productivity and earnings.
The challenge of implementing a system
Around a quarter of technological implementations fail, and another quarter fall short of expectations, according to a study by the International Data Corporation (IDC).
Indeed, there is an ever-present risk in bringing innovation to market. Without the right business strategy and methodology, implementations can fail. The overarching reason for implementation failure is poor adoption rates, which can be explained by steep learning curves, difficulty of use, and incompatibility with other systems.
Fortunately, new FinTech solutions are making it easier to adopt efficient tools while minimizing costs. The software-as-a-service (SaaS) model and application programming interfaces (API) both promise seamless integration with new platforms. They reduce the workload for developing new front- and back-office advisory systems, streamlining the wealth manager’s workload.
7 steps to successful software implementation
Despite these advances in technology, the implementation process can be somewhat tricky, requiring an appropriate platform strategy. An optimal software implementation project can be broken down into 7 steps.
1. Evaluate your needs
Today, a range of specialized tools exists to enhance financial product and service efficiency. Some enable portfolio rebalancing; others ensure compliance or tax optimization. Certain tools are versatile, combining multiple functions.
Technology consistently aids in optimizing business processes. Occasionally, the simplest implementations yield the highest return on investment, with uncomplicated integration. Start by considering budget constraints and prioritizing straightforward deployments for impactful outcomes.
At this stage, the aim is to assess which tedious tasks can be simplified by technology or entrusted to a tool overseen by an advisor. The aim is to free up human resources for tasks that require a human touch.
2. Investigate your options
Once the decision has been made to improve a specific business area, the project team needs to identify the options available. Fortunately, innovative digital banking solutions abound.
A financial service looking to solve a relatively straightforward low-level problem is likely to find an API that already deals with that specific problem. It is also worth investigating solutions that can improve the existing system’s interconnectivity. A firm wishing to tackle a larger, more complex issue needs to adopt a more in-depth, long-term digital transformation strategy.
Before adopting a technology, it’s also important to determine whether it has a promising future. For example, is it a fad or an underlying trend? Its stability and reliability must also be assessed. The most innovative software application quickly becomes a liability if it doesn’t work or breaks down.
The choice of supplier should not be overlooked either. The Canadian FinTech industry is made up of a whole host of start-ups. Despite their quality, these young companies cannot offer the same reliability and technological know-how as a pioneer in the field.
3. Calculate the impacts
Once the feasible options have been identified, it’s time to draw up a project. This step can be delegated to a FinTech company that can create a comprehensive roadmap. An effective roadmap must present all the options suited to the company’s needs and their impact on the business. It should also take into account the changes expected in the sector over the next few years.
When weighing your options, consider these questions:
- What features will improve your business and the user experience?
- How consistent is the design?
- How easy is it to train users on the platform?
- What are the upfront and ongoing costs?
- Will it make a difference for your business and your customer service?
4. Assign responsibility for implementation
Forming a project management team comprising financial advisors offers clear benefits, especially when overseeing implementation. This team will enhance the roadmap, offering vital feedback, crucial for features like user interface development.
The team must be involved at every stage of the development process, because their needs as future users must guide the direction of the project. They will ultimately determine how effective this new platform will be for your company.
5. Pilot the solution
The implementation team can also pilot the solution and teach their colleagues how to use the new digital technology. To do this, user data must be collected and relayed to the development team for adjustments and tweaking before the broader release.
The insights provided by the team are invaluable because they can reveal problems not apparent to non-users. It can make the difference between an unsuccessful or successful digital transformation.
Once the new technology has been successfully tested, it’s time to start training users. It’s essential to set up a training program to familiarize employees with the new platform before its launch.
The implementation of any tool relies on user adoption. This can only happen if the intended users feel comfortable with the tool and use it effectively. Encouraging users to undergo training can help you achieve your implementation objectives.
WealthTech providers usually have a team dedicated to user training and customer service. It’s also a good idea to adopt solutions that integrate training tools.
AI advancements, including ChatGPT, are sparking a training revolution. Researchers aim to enhance tailored FinTech user chats, signifying a transformative shift in artificial intelligence applications.
7. Launch and tune-up
Finally, having successfully trained the user base, it’s time to launch the new solution. The success or failure of a project launch ultimately depends on whether or not users adopt the new technology.
Now that the work is done, it’s time to keep the engine well-tuned. In a dynamic industry, staying on top of new technologies remains crucial.
How financial technology is changing the wealth management industry
Over the last few decades, new WealthTech applications have improved productivity, monitoring, risk assessment, and many other aspects of wealth management. As the industry becomes increasingly competitive and customer expectations more demanding, banks and firms have no choice but to improve their business. With the growing adoption of these technologies, the industry is undergoing a profound and lasting transformation.
Improved productivity is the main reason why banks are adopting these technologies, followed by better customer experience and profitability.
To find out more, read the article How is Fintech changing wealth management?
How does Croesus open a world of possibilities?
Since 1987, Croesus has been striving to make life easier for financial advisors and portfolio managers by offering a wide range of powerful and efficient solutions.
In today’s industry, financial professionals need a robust, easy-to-use, and integrated platform that allows them to collect data from stand-alone systems and interact with clients effectively to securely and efficiently manage client portfolios and assets.
To find out more, read the article Opening a world of possibilities in wealth management.