Data management: The key to increased profitability

By Daniel Eriksson
7 March 2017

What would it do for your business if you could enhance sales levels, improve the customer experience throughout the client lifecycle, bolster operating efficiencies and thereby increase your profitability?

That’s what you get with better data management, according to the latest WealthBriefing/SS&C Advent Technology & Operations Trends survey[1].

Complete and accurate datasets are critically important in enabling wealth managers to meet their ever-more onerous regulatory burdens. But more than that, the right data, properly collected and analysed, will be a powerful, commercially-valuable asset.

Unfortunately, this is where many wealth managers struggle. For as the survey points out, there is a “difference between merely ‘having’ data and actually using it.”

Right tools for the job

It comes down to the old adage of ‘quality, not quantity.’

Most firms have access to a mass of client and market data. But the real question is, are you collecting the right data, and can you extract valuable insights from it?

First step is to gather and store as much relevant data as possible on clients’ profiles and objectives. That starts at the beginning. Professional, systematized—and preferably digitalized—data capture, especially during the client onboarding process, is critical to accurately risk-profiling clients and meeting your ongoing regulatory responsibilities, notes the report.

But robust data collection and collation processes are only part of the solution. Firms also need to deploy the right filters and intelligent analytics to extract useful and usable information that can help you better segment clients based on their characteristics, preferences and behaviors.

Armed with these insights, you can develop targeted products and services for specific client segments, and adopt appropriate fee structures and product margins. And by delivering this more optimized client experience, notes the report, “boosted profitability will follow.”

A question of infrastructure

The problem, points out the report, is that wealth managers “often find themselves stymied by their systems set-up and the format in which data has been stored,” with legacy systems and siloed, unstructured data perennial issues.

Instead, the onus must be on automation, standardization and centralization. That demands a proper infrastructure, including:

  • An interactive client engagement solution to help automate client onboarding and reporting distribution.
  • A centralized CRM system able to track and manage every client interaction.
  • A flexible data hub to act as a single data store.
  • An integrated portfolio management solution that can disseminate real-time portfolio information.

It is no small ask. But those wealth managers that take the steps towards effective data management will have a huge competitive advantage.

[1] Technology & Operations Trends in the Wealth Management Industry 2017, by WealthBriefing and SS&C Advent

To get a full copy of the report, visit “Technology & Operations Trends in the Wealth Management Industry 2017”.