Following the introduction of the Future of Financial Advice (FoFA) reforms, many practices have told us of their struggles in producing annual Fee Disclosure Statements (FDS) and bi-annual opt-in documents for their clients.
For most practices to produce a FDS for a client, an administrator’s task involves calculating fees for the relevant period and updating individual templates with client/adviser details. In addition to fee disclosure, practices are required to confirm the services that were provided/not provided for the relevant period. Common pain points that arise throughout this process include the impact of human error resulting in incorrect disclosures as well the significant time and resources allocated towards an entire client panel.
Similarly, the opt-in process requires an administrator to manually update and produce an opt-in document for each client. However, unlike a FDS, an administrator is required to manage and track the progress of the opt-in (whether the client requires a follow up, has chosen to decline, or has returned a signed document which requires scanning/document management for compliance purposes) as well as update relevant changes manually within the CRM.
'There is light at the end of the tunnel!'
As presented in our September webinar, there are several options your practice to enable your practice to effectively and efficiently produce FDS documents and simplify the opt-in management process.
Fee Disclosure Statements (FDS)
To produce a FDS via XPLAN, you have the option to code a FDS template (mandatory for this process) to incorporate 'fee data' from the following area(s) of XPLAN – CommPay (Recommended), IPS, and existing or custom created XPLAN fields.
In addition, an optimal 'Best Practice' FDS template can be coded to extract (see 'eNewsletters), (see 'Meetings') and (see 'Professional Services') to outline the services provided to your clients.
For more information on automation and best practice please refer to 'Best Practice: Annual Fee Disclosure'.
Please note, to incorporate the FDS process, the Client Focus module is mandatory to access the relevant fields/wizards/tasks/threads in your XPLAN site.
Our Recommended FDS Process
! Please note that this option requires CommPay
IRESS CommPay gives you a complete and scalable solution to fully support your revenue management – from uploading supplier statements to invoicing, reconciliation, and reporting. With powerful, purpose-built tools, CommPay allows you to effortlessly streamline and automate all areas of your revenue manage on one platform.
By investing in a highly effective and efficient FDS process with CommPay, your practice will reap the benefits of significantly reducing/eliminating (with automation) the time and resources allocated towards what is traditionally a manual and arduous process.
The immediate benefits will allow your practice to save time, which in turn saves cost, and will allow your practice allocate resources to key revenue generating areas of your business, providing greater cumulatively returns over the long run.
Through the lense of 'Best Practice' and practice management, CommPay FDS significantly reduces/eliminates the risks associated with alternative FDS options such as IPS and Manual processes. Key risk factors that can be minimised/avoided include human error - miscalculations and incorrect data entry as well as data corruption and data error provided by third parties.
IRESS Portfolio System (IPS)
! Please note that this option require IPS and datafeeds
- An automated datafeed directly from the product provider to your XPLAN site; or
- A manual datafeed that requires you to upload a CSV file to your XPLAN site. Generally, this is data that you need to obtain from the product provider.
Manual & Invoicing
! Please note that this option requires:
- Custom fields (Optional)
- CSV Upload
You will be required to update the CSV file with the fee details that you wish to disclose to your clients.
- Distribution methods for your FDS:
- Utilise XPLAN email templates to attach and send FDS documents to your clients; or
- Provide FDS documents to your clients via Client Access.
Both the above options will allow you to automatically save your correspondence in XPLAN notes
- Automate the FDS process by incorporating Scheduler (available with Client Focus) and/or Alerts Manager.
- Where FDS and Opt-in dates coincide - Incorporate an email template to enable the client to view the FDS and Opt-in.
- Provide a client a joint FDS & Opt-in to confirm via Client Access and Digital Signature.
- To assist in managing your FDS, create a dashboard with widgets to view clients with upcoming FDS dates.
! Please note that this option requires a XPLAN Email Opt-in Template
! Please note that this option requires Digital Signature
- Digital Signature (! Clients will require a valid email address and mobile phone number)
- Client Access (Optional)
- Opt-in Template
- Have in place a secondary email to follow up the client should the client not respond within a period (e.g. 14 days, 7 days) prior to the due date .
- To assist in managing your Opt-in, create a dashboard to view clients with upcoming Opt-in Dates / Opt-in Overdue / and Opt-in changes
- Digital Signature only - Have in place a ‘Document Void’ period to ensure the client does not sign outside of the prescribed period.
If you wish to explore any of the above options for your practice,