We all want to experience services that make us feel special and valued. Financial Services should be no different.

The service should be personalised, not a step in an automated process - something that your clients will remember you for.

It’s surprising how often the things that seem relatively insignificant, are the ones that deliver us with the highest levels of satisfaction. Technology can take some of the ‘grunt-work’ out of creating a personalised service and it can really help you deliver something memorable and recommendable.

Your practice management or back office technology will hold a wealth of data about clients and this data can be the key to differentiating client interactions. Here are just some of the ways Xplan can be used to personalise the experience clients receive.

Making review meetings memorable

In Xplan, Alerts Manager can alert you that a review is due. Following this you or a member of your team could just call the client and book it in, but using Xplan Diary you have at your fingertips a way of easily adding a more personal touch. This simple tool not only keeps a record of all your client meetings, but also enables you to easily recall these details, meaning you can have a much more informed conversation. Just that extra step of easily identifying when you last saw them and dropping that in to the conversation really helps to personalise the experience.

Your technology will hold a wealth of data about clients. This data can be the key to differentiating client interactions.

Approaching the meeting date - do you remind the client in any way? We’re all used to reminder messages from everyone from our dentist to our window-cleaner. Xplan can be used so you can also remind your client using SMS messages, if that’s their preferred means of contact. You could build a workflow using Threads to trigger a text to let the client know you are looking forward to seeing them and a reminder of the date.

When the meeting day arrives, how do you prepare for your client’s arrival? Within Xplan you have the ability to add custom fields. These can be used to record all sorts of things, but a simple yet effective use could be recording what the client likes to drink. “Welcome Mr & Mrs Smith - can I get you both a drink, is it still black coffee and a flat white?” Simple, but it’s a really effective personal touch point that makes your client feel special. A personal experience ticked off before they get in to the meeting room.

Wealth of data at your fingertips

Advisers find out all sorts of information about the client during review meetings. Much of which may seem inconsequential but in reality is gold-dust when it comes to adding that little extra personal touch. It could be where they are next off on holiday, to the imminent arrival of new members of the household. Maybe they loyally support one beloved sports team through all sorts of trials and tribulations or maybe they don’t like sports at all. These aren’t hard factfind points to record for compliance purposes, but they are things that help you to know your client better, and to demonstrate you’ve taken the time to get to really know them, and care about them adding a huge amount of value to your client relationship.

Time savings create greater capacity for bringing more clients onboard without any compromise of service quality.

Prevent client drop out

This requires intuitive systems that are outcome based, rather than linear software processes unable to respond to the outcomes of each task. The linear process may look good from the design perspective, but in reality it can be inefficient, protracted and demand more from the user than is necessary.

If the client is repeatedly required to complete and submit numerous paper documents during the onboarding process, there is clearly an increased chance of drop-out and therefore damage to the brand perception.

The automated, intuitive Xplan workflow creates efficiency and reduces duplication throughout the process, with many different tasks performed automatically on the adviser’s behalf. When the client record is set up the other elements then fall into place without the adviser having to spend valuable time and resource on manual tasks.

The system can send the adviser an automatic notification that the client is onboard, help prepare information for the adviser and allow other parts of business to prepare the relevant documentation.

The adviser can focus entirely on building the relationship, without the time consuming distraction of endless paperwork. In addition, the time savings create greater capacity for bringing more clients onboard without any compromise of service quality. So a great onboarding process creates fantastic opportunities to scale, efficiently and profitably.

3 easy ways to make your service more personal

  • Remember the small stuff
    Use meeting notes, or perhaps add a custom section to the factfind of Xplan, to capture the soft know-your-client details. Review the notes before the next meeting and be able to confidently make the client feel special.
  • Present client friendly information
    Rather than showing clients the systems you use from an end user angle, present a slick, client view with the Iress Client Portal. Use your tablet, monitor or even a large screen when presenting information to help clients feel more involved with the process and help engage them with their financial wellbeing too.
  • Take a holistic approach
    Think about the client journey. Consider every step from onboarding to reviews and how you can create the kind of experience you yourself would be impressed with.

A version of this article first appeared in Professional Paraplanner, UK.