Don’t leave me hanging on the telephone
Do you remember the song? The video? I’m very sure that there is a certain generation of men and women who were very much taken by Debbie Harry – her edgy style and looks. But by now, you might be asking yourself, “What the fintech digital has Debbie Harry got to do with systems connectivity?”
The Contract Enquiry Standard - the back-bone to automated real-time valuations data being pumped from platforms and providers to adviser back office systems – doesn’t leave you hanging on the telephone.
And, although a classic Standard, real-time valuations (straight from platforms to advisers’ systems) is still very much in demand as it continues to climb the systems integration charts.
And here’s why:
For advisers, online valuations is just one example of how systems being interconnected improves servicing and saves them heaps of time and so money. Crucially though, it also saves platforms a lot of money too. Talk about win: win.
The unfortunate thing is that, automated valuations across the board is still sporadic. There are certain systems, platforms, providers and of course legacy products for which valuation integration is simply missing.
That means, the adviser and their support staff, are having adapt their procedures for gathering valuation information for each product, for each of their clients. So, for Client A and their Product X, the valuation is sent straight through to the back-office system – no phone calls, no waiting. But, for Product Y and Z - everyone (adviser, platforms) is ‘hanging on the telephone’ waiting for the information. This information takes time to receive, and once received, it will then be manually (therefore open to keying errors) entered onto a system. All this effort for a simple bit of information – that just so happens to also change quite frequently.
Hanging on the telephone is not only apt for valuations. But there is a range of other business processes where hanging on the telephone is, unfortunately, still the norm – despite the technology being out there.
Interconnecting systems and ease of flowing, accurate data is important in our investments and pensions world – especially for the client. Over the coming weeks, we will explore in more detail the current approaches to integration set-up and maintenance - and how, especially in the hazy days of replatforming, how these current approaches need to change for sustainability and improving outcomes for consumers.
Until then, let’s get our rock on.