Financial Planning Ltd
Alan Moran of Interface Financial Planning Ltd shares his thoughts after installing Intelligent Office (iO) in April 2015.
My firm installed its new back office system a couple of months ago as the system we had been using, Iress’ Adviser Office, had started to creak at the seams and we had additional costs just to host the system.
I had been a strong supporter of Iress for the past 12 years, even chairing the regional user group. We initially moved to Iress’s XPLAN as an alternative because its technology was a bit more modern. However after struggling desperately with the system for five months, I looked for technology with the right functionality to fully meet our business’ needs.
I chose Intelliflo’s Intelligent Office (iO), which seemed to offer what I needed. I was cautious about making the right decision for our business and I spent many hours looking at alternatives, but I also needed to make a decision quickly because of the tight spot that we were in. With some trepidation I held my breath, took the plunge, and thankfully Intelliflo’s Intelligent Office was the right choice.
The difference with Intelliflo’s iO is that it does what it says on the tin. I need a system to act as a hub for all client activity, including client valuations, and a system that demonstrates we are meeting our service standards where every client contact is recorded. A sound back office system for a successful adviser firm needs to analyse business data, track compliance and meet the FCA’s reporting needs.
A good system also needs to provide client access so they can view their account 24/7 and exchange documents and messages as required. In the past, many practices considered the focus of a back office system as somewhere to identify marketing and sales opportunities.
With today’s service based practices where regular income accounts for 90% of revenue a good system must help you enhance your service to your existing clients and iO is set up to do just that. In my opinion iO is a serious player in the back office systems market.
The more integration your back office system has, the more efficient and profitable your business will be with more time spent providing value to your clients. With our valuation integration, we can access the information we need quickly and efficiently and make sure clients are paying the agreed fees. iO is a pretty innovative back office system - access is via a web-browser and data is backed up in the cloud. There is also an iPad App available.
Running a modern business without a reliable back office system is like trying to run a business without computers. I wouldn’t consider travelling to business meetings on an old pushbike and I think my clients are entitled to expect more.
An adviser firm has to be proactive not reactive and work out what is around the corner.
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