Driving efficiency and reducing duplication in client engagement
25 February 2021 by PlanFocus Team
driving efficiency

Client engagement

Client: Advise Wise Pty Ltd

Driving efficiency and reducing duplication in client engagement

About Advise Wise Pty Ltd

At Advise Wise we seek to make real, enduring, and meaningful changes in our clients’ personal and financial lives. We build and foster a bright and committed team with a shared ethos in supporting and empowering people to fulfil their aspirations.

Synopsis

By implementing a series of data automation and integration activities, Advise Wise were able to significantly improve data quality and increase data automation across all their business systems. This has allowed Advise Wise to set a baseline technology infrastructure to allow the business to increase efficiency and profitability, and provide a platform for effecting and maintaining best practice in technology in the practice moving forward.

Overview

Advise Wise is a boutique self-licenced financial planning practice in Sydney that has continued to grow consistently since foundation in 2015. With ambitious growth objectives to execute, the firm quickly realised that data quality and system integration problems had the potential to hamper the viability of this growth. They contacted Planfocus for help in solving some of these problems.

The requirements

  • Review all aspects of the advice process to identify areas of double handling and duplication
  • Re-engineer processes where possible 
  • Implement system improvements where business case is presented

Planfocus was engaged to provide business analysis and integration services to increase the firm’s confidence in the robustness of their advice systems and reduce the risks of error and duplication in their advice production.

Tasks to be automated

  • Client communications
  • Client booking
  • Fact finding
  • Risk Profiling
  • Keying of fact find and risk profiling

The Solution

Planfocus worked with Advise Wise with a focus on client engagement, and data integration. 

Timeframe 12 months

System Function Integration With How
XPLAN Advice production Roar Software API
Fin365 CSV
Fin365 CRM and practice management XPLAN CSV
Active Campaign API (Microsoft Flow)
Mercury Software Zapier / API
Roar Software Data collection and online risk profiling XPLAN API
Calendly Online booking Active Campaign Native
Active Campaign Online marketing solution Calendly Native
Fin365 API – Microsoft Flow
Mercury Software Mortgage and lending software Fin365 Zapier / API
Zapier Integration software Mercury Software Native

Activities undertaken

TaskDescription
ImplementationsReview and implement Calendly, Roar Software and Zapier
Software DevelopmentDesign and implement integration methods using Microsoft APIs, Zapier and Microsoft Flow
CustomisationsCustom field extensions for XPLAN, Active Campaign, Calendly and Fin365
Business Process DesignA comprehensive review and redesign of the firm’s new business and review process looking for improvements and data handover points
Data MappingAn end to end data map of the integration points between systems. The focus here is on creating a process control framework so that staff understand all the data points and modify processes where data points are not available.
Training and governanceWeekly progress meetings with stakeholders.Electronic training and process media to support integrations and data controls.

Sample process flow

Outcome

Advise Wise were successfully able to reduce data duplication and double handling significantly as a result of the integration and implementations. 

Some of the benefits seen so far:

  • Advise Wise were able to replace traditional data collection paperwork with digital copies which has reduced office clutter. At this point they believe they have reduced key entry by at least 80% on pre-automation tasks.
  • Faster turnaround – While there are still efficiencies to be gained, Advise Wise has been able to speed up client onboarding and CRM updates while reducing errors and frustrations and is already seeing a reduction in advice turnaround times and volumes.
  • Advise Wise expects to increase productive capacity of advice staff by 20% year on year as a result of these changes.

Key learnings

Focus on progress, not perfection

While team members touch data up to 80% less than they ever have done in the past, more automation and data integration is needed.  Data integrations are never 100% perfect. The data mapping between systems highlights areas of each system that do not perfectly match up with each other.

This finding was not specific to any one system but relevant to all. Businesses need to be vigilant in monitoring the improvements made to vendor APIs. To control this, Advise wise is creating a series of screen recordings to show team members which data points need to be monitored closely when they are in certain parts of the process.

Integration systems need to be managed

Running any digital process requires ongoing care and maintenance. Because many of the systems in your ecosystem can be customised, changes made to any one system can disturb or break the integration with other systems. Be careful when customising integrated systems and keep your IT team informed of your intended changes.

So, what’s next for Advise Wise?

Advise Wise continue to harden their business processes as they become more proficient running their new systems. Additional API integration enhancements are planned for the near future.

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