Benchmarking Advisor Financial Planning Activities

Benchmarking Advisor Financial Planning Activities

Financial planning is a win-win-win for the client, the advisor, and the advisor’s firm;  clients with a plan are more confident about their financial future, move more of their assets to the advisor who provides the plan, and are less likely to abandon the advisor’s firm.

Yet Kehrer Bielan research has revealed that about half of bank-based advisors engage in planning with no more than one client a month.

As we work with banks and credit unions to increase the breadth and depth of their plan penetration, we are struck by the paucity of information that they can use to monitor the progress their advisors are making in embracing planning.  To fill this gap, Kehrer Bielan is providing an annual service to help you assess how your advisors stack up against their peers in other institutions.

How does it work?

We obtain data on the quantity and quality of the plans each of your advisors has touched during the previous year directly from the planning software firm your firm uses.

Why obtain data from the planning software firms? 

We have found that many banks and credit unions do not have systems to monitor their advisors’ planning activity.  By obtaining data from the planning software firms, we are able to obtain data with consistent definitions across firms, and advisors.  A by-product of this approach is that firms can participate in the benchmarking study without investing any significant staff or technology resources.

Why collect data on individual advisors instead of information on the firm? 

Firm-level data obscures important differences across firms on where they stand on the journey to holistic advice.  For example, two firms might have the same average number of plans completed per advisor, but in one of the firms planning might be concentrated in just a handful of advisors, while the other has most of its advisor doing a modest level of planning.  Of course, we will roll up the advisors in each firm for firm-by-firm statistics.  Anonymously, of course.

What about data confidentiality?

We ask to receive only anonymized data.  Your software planning firm sends you the data for each advisor.  You replace the names or IDs with a code for each advisor that only you know.  If we have a question about a particular advisor – Did advisor BB really do 211 plans last year? – we can query you to resolve the anomaly.

What do we receive?

We expect to evolve the benchmarks over time as participants suggest improvements.  We hope to create a community of financial planning managers who will use this tool and share insights about how to improve financial planning.

How much does it cost to participate? 

We have tiered pricing based on the size of the participating firms:

  • Firms with fewer than 20 Advisors: $250
  • Firms with 20–100 Advisors: $500
  • Firms with 100–200 Advisors: $750
  • Firms with 200–400 Advisors: $1,000
  • Firms with over 400 Advisors: $2,000
  • Firms with over 400 Advisors with additional level breakouts – contact erika.kehrer@kehrerbielan.com