By Guest Contributors on February 25, 2010
Every quarter (or month) wealth firms get in front of their clients in a highly visible and lasting way when they send out their client statements. Unlike meetings, a client’s statement will be around for months or years. The statement represents the wealth firm’s brand. Wealthy clients today are looking and requiring reporting that meets their information needs. This includes:
- Delivering the information the client wants – many clients do not want transaction listings for discretionary accounts, but some may want. Their centres of influence such as accountants may also have specific reporting requirements. The wealth firm needs to be able to address the needs of both types of clients and their COI’s for the level of reporting they require.
- Delivering in the format the client wants. Many clients (including me) prefer electronic versions as they are easier to store and there is less chance of the paper copy getting misplaced. Additionally, due to confidentiality and identity theft issues, the paper statements need to be destroyed properly with shredders which adds additional work for the client. The bigger the statement and the more accounts for a family, the greater the shredding time required (based on personal experience).
- The client’s view of their holdings may not match up with their account structure. Clients may want reporting at the account and consolidated level. Inclusion of off book assets is becoming a high value added service to provide the client with a total view of their wealth. This is especially important for HNW clients and wealthy families who may have private equity. limited partnerships and other non traded securities.
The ability to address the client’s reporting needs, increases the ability of the wealth firm to achieve a “trusted advisor” status by being able to understand, advise and manage all of a client’s wealth. Client Reporting is not a quarterly task for wealth management firms, but an opportunity to stand above the crowd and meet the client’s information needs.
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