Over the years, many articles have been written on the role of the paraplanner and financial planner. However, the role of the administrator within the financial planning business is one which, all too often, has been overlooked. In this month’s Better Business, I shall look at some aspects of the administrator role and give some practical tips for firms considering their approach.
The old days
Historically, financial planning firms have tended to keep their administrators in the background. They would very rarely meet with the client. Their main functions included, but were not limited to, new business processing, collation of letters of authority and liaising with product providers.
Now, with increasing focus being attached to the delivery of a high quality financial planning service, the role of the administrator has taken on new – and much deserved – importance. The administrator role now encompasses a more client-facing role, thereby helping to ensure a more effective and efficient delivery of the firms’ service proposition to clients as well as more effective working practices for planners and paraplanners. And it’s not before time!
Administrators (or Client Services as is a term often used) may now be involved in arranging and sitting in on client meetings, accompanying the planner and paraplanner in a team approach. They may also be obtaining cashflow details or organising client paperwork (remember the bag of paperwork that the client brings to the meeting?). This all needs sorting out so using administration support takes the pressure off paraplanners and planners and brings added value to the business. It also helps the individual administrators to upskill, to develop their own knowledge and skills thereby boosting their job satisfaction too.
Introducing the administrator to your client at the beginning of the relationship provides them with the opportunity to liaise directly with the client on tasks, which may have previously been taken on by the paraplanner and financial planner. Take the time to consider how you currently use your administration team and think about what is missing and needed from the process. There are likely to be many ways in which you can utilise their skills and harmonise the team approach for everyone’s benefit.
Continue reading article…