FPPad Bits and Bytes for April 17

On today’s broadcast, Grendel updates its CRM and portfolio reporting engine to help you be more efficient, find out what IBM Watson has to say about your personality, and a new app helps “Crystal”-ize what you know about your clients and prospects.

So get ready, FPPad Bits and Bytes begins now.

(Watch FPPad Bits and Bytes on YouTube)

Today’s episode is brought to you by ITEGRIA, providers of complete outsourced technology support, security, infrastructure and IT solutions exclusively for RIAs.

itegria - providing a 360-degree, comprehensive approach to financial advisor IT needs

In their new book titled Red Flags, you’ll learn how to protect your firm from cyber-attacks, disasters, and IT compliance risks. Learn more about the Red Flags book by visiting fppad.com/itegria.

Here are the links to this week’s top stories:

Tech Review: Upgrade for Grendel from Financial Planning

[This week’s top story comes from Grendel Online, as the technology provider is evolving from a stand-alone CRM solution to a fully-featured wealth management platform. Now the move towards platforms is definitely a growing trend in the industry, because if you remember last year, inStream Solutions, which started out as a financial planning software program, also added features and adopted the wealth management platform moniker.

This week, Joel Bruckenstein provided an update of Grendel, which features a web-based CRM that stores all the essential contact information and notes about your client interactions. In addition, Grendel now offers performance-reporting modules available through a strategic partnership with First Rate, a performance solution provider for SEI, SunGard and more. So now advisors can view portfolio holdings and performance within the Grendel platform, and they can customize client reports using a report builder that has roughly 100 widgets that can be arranged with a simple drag and drop editor.

Bruckenstein does mention some concerns about the lack of comprehensive trading and rebalancing functionality and limited of integrations relative to other wealth management platforms, but Grendel certainly isn’t asleep at the wheel. While Grendel might fall short of the features offered by established platforms like Envestnet | Tamarac and Orion Advisor Services, Grendel isn’t going to come with the premium price tag, either. Grendel offers a pathway for advisors using stand-alone CRMs who are looking for something a bit more comprehensive, but also want something that won’t break the bank.] Advisors tend to overlook Grendel Online — and I sometimes do as well, for a couple of reasons.

Personality Insights Demonstration from IBM

[Next up is news from IBM, yes, that’s right, THAT IBM. Now on the technology side, you probably associate IBM with its super-computer named Watson, especially after the artificial intelligence computing system decimated human contestants in the popular TV game show Jeopardy.

Anyways, IBM is now actively seeking opportunities to enhance financial services by applying Watson’s enormous capabilities to better address client needs. I admit this might sound a little to like science-fiction, but here’s how you can test the power of Watson today.

IBM has a page online where you can paste in a block of text written by anyone and instantly receive personality insights about the author of the text. The link is in this week’s top stores. Try it with something you’ve written, and then see what happens when you enter text typed by a colleague, or even a client. The more text you have, the more accurate the insights should be, say, for example, using an epic blog post from Michael Kitces. It’s pretty amazing, and also a little creepy at the same time. He has an affinity for blue shirts, huh, who knew?]

Stalk everyone you know with this eerily accurate app that tells you how to talk to people from The Next Web

[And finally, if you think IBM’s personality insights are creepy, a new app out this week called Crystal takes things a step further. Crystal scours the Web for public information written by your connections and then builds a personality profile for that person. If there’s enough public information available, Crystal offers insights on what to say in a conversation, how to compose emails to that person, details on that person’s work style, and what to do when you’re conducting a sales process.

So instead of you doing all the information discovery on clients and prospects to paste into IBM’s personality insights tool, Crystal does all the heavy lifting for you. Say you want Michael Kitces to respond to your emails, for example: here’s a hint, don’t use sarcasm.] Crystal, a new app that analyzes public data to tell you exactly how to communicate with people, has had us all at TNW looking up our friends and family today (as well as ourselves, of course) to find out what it knows about us.

Here are stories that didn’t make this week’s broadcast:

AdvisoryWorld Unveils Advisor Proposal Generator from Marketwired.com

AdvisoryWorld, the leading provider of investment analytics, portfolio modeling, and proposal generation technology for the financial services industry, today announced the release of AdvisoryWorld’s Advisor Proposal Generator application.


Watch FPPad Bits and Bytes for April 17, 2015

Watch FPPad Bits and Bytes for April 17, 2015


2 Responses to “FPPad Bits and Bytes for April 17”

  1. Dave April 17, 2015 10:06 am

    Wow, that Watson personality eval was almost spot on, even on multiple entries. I used old client emails I wrote in the past and just copied/pasted into the form. From Watson:

    “You are heartfelt, rational and restrained.

    You are philosophical: you are open to and intrigued by new ideas and love to explore them. You are empathetic: you feel what others feel and are compassionate towards them. And you are self-controlled: you have control over your desires, which are not particularly intense.

    You consider helping others to guide a large part of what you do: you think it is important to take care of the people around you. You are relatively unconcerned with taking pleasure in life: you prefer activities with a purpose greater than just personal enjoyment.”

    …though I’m disagree with the “unconcerned with taking pleasure in life” part. 🙂

    • Bill Winterberg April 20, 2015 5:50 pm

      Dave, thank you for sharing. It is fascinating what Watson is capable of today!