Financial Planning Software For Advisors – Unlock Your Webinar Access: Winning Data Teams: Getting Started and Growing Your Team Aired November 15, 2022
Update: We just released our 2017 review of the 4 best financial planning apps for advisors, including eMoney Advisor, MoneyGuidePro, Navicent, and Advizr.
Financial Planning Software For Advisors
As the digital revolution continues to disrupt business models across all industries, financial planning is one area where technological advancements are key. Wealth managers with stronger financial planning tools that can create stronger client engagement will have a competitive advantage.
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Financial advisors are already inundated with endless streams of information and marketing messages. And with so many financial planning software options available, how can they determine which platform is right for their practice?
Here at Wealth Management Today, we hope to clear up some of this confusion by reviewing and comparing two of the most popular financial planning software for financial advisors; Electronic Money Advisor and MoneyGuidePro. (See FinPlan Shootout: Finance Logix Review)
We planned this article late last year, before the recent announcement that Fidelity was buying eMoney Advisor. But our timing is fortuitous. This review should be quite helpful for advisors who may be concerned that Fidelity may decide to stop supporting other trustees or make “changes” that harm their competitors.
While Fidelity spokespeople say all the right things about preserving the independence of electronic money, the future is unknown. There is no time like today to evaluate your options and see if there is another solution that may be a better fit for your practice. Go on with the show! —
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Founded in 2000, eMoney Advisor is a comprehensive financial planning software application that offers clients analysis and forecasting based on both goals and cash flows. The platform accumulates more than $1 trillion in client assets in more than 875,000 accounts and serves prominent clients such as TD Ameritrade, RBC Wealth Management, New York Life and LPL Financial. The company works with 46 of the top 50 broker-dealers who are able to absorb the relatively high cost of electronic money.
The first thing we noticed on the eMoney Advisor home page was the “Financial Feed” feature on the right side of the display, which offers advisors a Facebook-like user view, keeping them up to date with everything that’s happening in their book. Business. This update provides advisors with real-time interactive alerts, tasks and news related to all data stored in the app, helping them track potentially important client and market data. Interactive alert functionality allows advisors to click on an alert link for more detailed information about the alert message.
In addition, the channel issues alerts to notify advisors when customers log into eMoney or add a new account or upload information to their profile. Also, eMoney is developing a new feature that will integrate financial data from sources like Morningstar into feeds, helping advisors build client portfolio forecasts based on market events, such as corporate earnings reports, for example. The only downside to this feature is that, like Facebook, the feed can bombard the advisor with unnecessary and excessive messages.
Meanwhile, in the main interface, the three main categories highlighted are assets under management (organized by asset class, tax status, etc.), assets held by other custodians and lead carriers, which show the most active holdings in the portfolio of the advisor. in real time. The interface design uses color effectively without overwhelming the end user. An abundance of clean white space creates the foundation for a modern and intuitive navigation experience, reducing the interface to its most basic and user-friendly form.
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Another impressive feature is the platform’s client portal, which allows the advisor’s clients to access the platform or print a statement of their finances whenever they want. eMoney’s client portal is a welcoming, detailed and interactive asset that displays all client information related to wealth management such as net worth, investments, insurance, budgets and expenses in a way that provides maximum transparency while minimizing navigational difficulties for the customer. The client portal also facilitates asset accumulation and escrow accounts, which help advisors gain a clearer picture of their clients’ financial lives.
EMoney’s next-generation planning and analytics component may offer the biggest offering on the platform. This feature gives consultants three planning portals:
All three portals have the same interactive functionality built in with a “what-if” feature that provides a drop-down list of portfolio-disrupting scenarios such as a bear market, spousal disability, retirement, increased inflation, and other events. The platform also allows advisors to include multiple “what if” scenarios in their forecasts.
And for more detailed information on scenarios, advisors can access the Decision Center and choose from three views: cash flow, detailed cash flow, or a Monte Carlo analysis that determines the likelihood of a plan’s success along with other data. eMoney Analytics allows advisors to mine their book by age, institution, account type, assets under management vs. remote assets and a host of other offerings. eMoney also offers customers a “techniques” feature that allows them to explore potential actions they can take to fund a goal or meet a cash flow goal.
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EMoney boasts some very impressive integrations with CRM leader Redtail, portfolio accounting tool Orion Advisor Services, Allbridge Wealth Reporting and industry-leading market research tool Morningstar, to name a few. With all these combinations of strategic partners, the consultant’s workload is significantly reduced, so he can focus on the real priority: the client.
Last but not least, the eMoney platform also boasts a top-notch security architecture. Although the cloud has been a well-documented haven for cyber attackers, Electronic Money uses 256-bit Secure-Socket Layer encryption to protect customer information and stores all of its data with Sungard Data Systems, a market leader in data storage for large financial companies.
With a minimum rate of $3,600 per advisor for the recently updated EMXpro package (the standard EMX retails for $2,400), the cloud-based service is more expensive than the average financial planning application. But for the right advisor with the right clientele, the subscription fee is well worth the investment. The platform’s user experience, intuitiveness and functionality are seamless, making eMoney stand out from the competition.
Each financial planning application is rated in the six categories described above on a scale of 1 to 5. eMoney’s strong performance in client portal, planning, analytics and reporting, and security helped them achieve an overall score of 32 out of 35.
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MoneyGuidePro is another dominant player in the SAAS financial planning space. MoneyGuidePro, developed by financial software company PIETech, was released in 2001 and has been the most-used financial planning platform for the past seven years, according to a survey of RIAs by Financial Planning magazine. As of 2013, Aite Group research stated that MoneyGuidePro captured 7% of the financial planning software market in North America.
When it comes to financial planning software, PIETech’s mantra is commitment. This company philosophy is evident in MoneyGuidePro’s main menu interface with its mix of visually appealing icons that match the user’s options. The Monte Carlo simulator is represented by an Ace of Spades card, the password change setting is accompanied by a key, and so on.
The design tab at the top of the screen easily guides users to the customer onboarding portal, which is intuitive and easy to navigate. Like eMoney, the design of the platform consists of a rich white surface with conservative color distributions. But once you get into the design section, the platform’s data entry functionality shines. The app has a life expectancy calculator where users can specify variables such as smoker or non-smoker status; their health status and other detailed information points. From the information provided, the program can predict the likelihood of you living to different ages. And if the client is married, MoneyGuidePro will calculate the life expectancy of the husband and wife.
With MoneyGuidePro’s SMART portal, the client becomes an active partner in the planning process from the very beginning. While the client is involved in the process, the consultant maintains maximum control. In addition, the consultant controls the types of modules that the client can see.
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In addition, the platform’s PlayZone tool allows customers to adjust guesswork to see how different moves affect their probability of success in a visual and interactive way. The program even allows advisors to model a variable annuity with annuities within a plan to see how their investment portfolio will react to various market events. Likewise, a customer can also access data detail pages to view items such as year-by-year details on taxes, investment returns, retirement income and projected expenses. This detail is helpful in educating clients about the impact of inflation on plan goals.
The program presentation tool is another outstanding feature. After creating a client plan, MoneyGuidePro automatically converts the document into an engaging PowerPoint-style presentation that visually engages the client with a wealth of graphically rich information and data. The platform also has a feature called Star Track, which allows the advisor to save their clients’ plans and compare them to financial forecasts made in recent years. However, Star Track only compares certain metrics, as opposed to the entire program.
The main drawback of MoneyGuidePro’s reporting and analysis functionality is that it does not rely on cash flow data, which reduces the accuracy of forecasts. However, the lack of intensive cash flow analysis may not show up