The future of advisor technology is here—and it will help enhance relationships with clients, not replace the role advisors play.
By Tara Wells, Director, Product Management and Platform Adoption, and Mick Dyer, Senior Marketing Content Manager
As a leader of a successful financial services enterprise, you understand the critical role your technology stack plays in all aspects of serving clients and operating your business. Based on everything you are probably reading about AI and other advancements in your news and social media feeds, you’re also likely aware of how the wealth management industry is rapidly—and significantly—changing.
Indeed, the future of broker-dealer and registered investment advisor (RIA) technology may be upon us. Whether you are excited or apprehensive about this prospect (or maybe a little bit of both) we have some good news to share. RBC Clearing & Custody delivers a fully modern technology suite to help turbo charge the way clients and financial professionals work together. People helping people, the way it’s always been done.
To borrow a quote from the 1939 classic movie The Wizard of Oz (the Star Wars of its era; check it out if you’ve never seen it) the Tin Man says the following to Dorothy when explaining what one wish he would ask the all-powerful wizard to fulfill for him.
“I had brains, and a heart also; so, having tried them both, I should much rather have a heart.”
What does the tin man have to do with financial services technology, you may ask? Some readers may recall that our brand used to be all about having a lot of heart. For decades, we were known for our commitment to excellent service, Midwestern values, and going the extra mile to help make a difference in businesses of the firms we serve.
What readers may not know is our technology has become a competitive advantage that is equally important to why firms choose us. Now our brand leads with technology, backed by service-oriented people with the knowhow you’re looking for to help you achieve your business goals.
As a matter of fact, we offer technology solutions that are plenty “smart.” And we are proud of software brainpower behind integrated tools that make it easy to accomplish even the most sophisticated tasks.
Just look at RBC Nexus, our all-in-one technology platform that helps unify, simplify and elevate your technology experience. Or our trading platform within RBC Nexus, that re-imagines equity, options and mutual funds trading to be more intuitive and user-friendly.
But what makes these innovations truly remarkable is the amount of heart we continue to pour into our technology investments. So, we’re a little like a new and improved tin man; with both brains and heart. Which helps our financial services technology feel a lot more human.
Our client- and advisor-centric “brains and heart” approach to technology is no accident. It’s what happens—naturally, we might add—when old school values blend with new school technology.
What exactly does this mean? You could say values are at the heart of everything we do. Royal Bank of Canada, our parent company, is a values-driven organization, well known worldwide for integrity, trustworthiness, accountability, collaboration and putting clients first.
In our experience, it takes “old school values” like these to create technology solutions that can help produce the outcomes clients and financial professionals want. When these values blend with new technology, something amazing happens for the people the technology is designed to benefit.
Our clients-first value helps guide our thoughts and attitude. By shaping our mindset, this value also defines our purpose, reinforces our customer-centered culture and establishes a course of action.
And our collaboration value helps guide our approach to technology development. We believe the firms and financial professionals using our technology should have a voice in our technology priorities, because at the end of the day, these stakeholders are the true “experts” and perhaps even “owners” of the tools we provide. Plus, we believe in bringing in the expertise of well qualified third-party technology providers when their solutions may be practical and cost effective to deliver.
We follow an agile methodology featuring personas and user-centered design. By involving clients in design steps, demos and pilots throughout development, we are able to help improve outcomes and boost adoption rates for new technology.
Our account opening solution is a prime example of how our clients first and collaboration values produce strategic results. We listened to our clients’ desire to offer a fully digital process and teamed with Docupace, a leading service provider, to deliver an online solution that helps reduce account opening time from days to only minutes with just a few clicks.
Trust is the foundation upon which the wealth management industry is built. For this reason, trust is a consideration that guides our decision-making. We ask ourselves, “How will our choices help instill trust among the firms, financial professionals and end clients we serve?”
In terms of the intersection of trust and technology, we understand that fast, secure access to relevant data is perhaps the most important thing people expect from our solutions. It couldn’t be simpler, really.
So on an annual basis, we invest the dollars necessary to ensure the data pipeline seamlessly flows to where it belongs, without springing any leaks along the way. This includes spending on infrastructure and human capital. Plus, we are supported by the robust cybersecurity organization of a global enterprise that closely coordinates with U.S. and international authorities to combat financial crime.
Put into practice, our client portal demonstrates how our trust value informs our decision-making regarding data delivery and data security. It features an intuitive and dynamic interface and delivers the latest user functionality with self-service features to make it quick and easy for clients to find what they’re looking for.
Accountability comes into play when we interact with firms, financial professionals and end clients. This could be the words we choose to use or the actions we choose to undertake. Our accountability goal is to be as transparent as possible regarding the information we communicate and the things we do on behalf of others.
Our staff is committed to straight talk and straight shooting in all our dealings with you. When blending our accountability value with technology we create mechanisms for delivering outcomes desirable by everyone: clarity where there are questions and simplicity where there are complexities.
RBC Performance Reporting perfectly illustrates how accountability and technology can merge to provide clarity and simplicity. Its name tells you exactly what it is—and its functionality lives up to its promise for what it does so well.
Integrity refers to the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles. As someone famous once said, integrity is what you do when no one is looking.
Integrity is the value that guides our behavior. For us, this means delivering on our promises, admitting when we are wrong, being honest with ourselves, doing business with honest people and keeping confidential information private.
We have a number of forums to ensure we understand what users want and need. They include our technology user community, pilot user groups, compliance peer group, client service managers and meetings we periodically host with key stakeholders.
Technology also offers a number of pathways to behavior with integrity. RBC BLACK—our client engagement platform—seamlessly integrates CircleBlack, Nitrogen (formerly known as Riskalyze), Redtail, and MoneyGuidePro into one convenient place for one competitive price.
Bringing four leading fintech solutions together like this demonstrates just how powerful technology can be for promoting integrity. And it’s the only multi-custodian integrated platform offered by a major clearing and custody provider.
It’s an almost undisputable fact. The wealth management technology that we only imagined a couple years ago is here today, as evidenced by the rapid proliferation and evolution of technology solutions clients demand and financial professionals need.
Of course, you want a modern technology stack—and for all the right reasons. Choose a clearing and custody provider whose technology is laden with more than just advanced features. Choose a dependable service partner whose technology solutions are truly values laden, as well.
Because when values underpin new technology, you get technology that is better designed to support productive relationships financial professionals have with clients, not replace the important role advisors play in the financial lives of real people.
Afterall, who wants to do business with a robot? Especially when given the opportunity to work with an experienced professional who genuinely cares about the well-being of their clients.
But more than delivering the innovative solutions you may be looking for and leaving it to you to do the rest, our technology also comes with a human touch. At the end of the day, this may be the most important factor in your decision to go with us.
Our technology product managers and strategic initiatives managers work with clients and collaborate with leading fintech providers who understand what is important to you. Plus, we offer consulting services from experienced specialists who can help you choose technology that is a good fit for your unique business goals.
Then our engineers and analysts will help you successfully deploy the technology you select. Our training and support team is always available to help you and your staff take full advantage of the capabilities you use every day. And our data team will help you benefit from what your technology is telling you about your business.
Please contact us today to schedule a technology demo. We’d like to discuss ways technology available from RBC Clearing & Custody can help make a difference in your business.