On today’s broadcast, LPL financial reveals its robo intentions, Wealthbox raises the CRM stakes with an integration with Slack, and Smarsh steps up its archiving of your Microsoft Office 365 content.
So get ready, FPPad Bits and Bytes begins now.
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Here are the links to this week’s top stories:
LPL Financial Launches Vendor Affinity Program from LPL, and
Google News results for LPL Vendor Affinity Program
[Today’s top story comes from LPL Financial, as the nation’s largest broker-dealer, oh, thank you disclosure, held its annual LPL Focus conference in Boston last week.
On the technology side, LPL announced it will soon introduce its own an automated investment service, cough robo-advisor, consisting of low-cost ETF portfolios powered by LPL’s research. No details on pricing or even a name for the solution were provided, but LPL president Dan Arnold did say that a pilot program with about 20 advisors will be begin in the next few months.
LPL also announced the launch of its Vendor Affinity Program, calling it “a centralized repository” of vendors that offer discounted pricing to LPL advisors for their products and services. LPL is launching the Vendor Affinity Program with over 50 vendors from the get-go, with discounts ranging anywhere from 10 percent to 80 percent off retail pricing.
Now if you’re not affiliated with LPL Financial, don’t get too discouraged. Vendors don’t get to be included in the affinity program simply by offering a discount; vendors must also meet certain security and compliance requirements imposed by LPL, so this is the takeaway for you. If you’re not really sure a technology vendor will meet the standards for your own business, you can be more confident in those vendors who have passed muster with LPL by meeting some pretty high standards.
As far as who is in the affinity program? I couldn’t reach anyone at LPL in time before filming this episode to get that list, but some detective work on Google should yield a list of usual suspects who’ve issued press releases regarding their inclusion into the program.] LPL Financial LLC, the nation’s largest independent broker-dealer, a custodian for registered investment advisors (RIAs), and a wholly owned subsidiary of LPL Financial Holdings Inc., today announced the launch of its Vendor Affinity Program, a new initiative designed to help advisors reduce the complexity and costs of running their businesses.
Wealthbox CRM Integrates with Slack! from Wealthbox, and
View Slack Pricing at Slack.com
[Next up is news from CRM provider Wealthbox, as the company announced a new integration with Slack, a wildly-popular online collaboration tool. “What is Slack?” you ask.
I’d rather not make a comparison to email, but, Slack is like email on steroids. But instead of collaborating via back-and-forth email threads, Slack lets you use real-time chat, aka messaging, to work with your team using Channels centered around certain topics, connect privately with colleagues using direct messages , or set up private groups with just a few team members to work on top secret tasks.
With the new Slack integration, Wealthbox users can select from 22 different notification types to automatically push into Slack, helping everyone in the firm stay informed on day-to-day activities. And with the Slack feed on your favorite mobile device, you should be able to stay in the loop on all sorts of tasks in your office no matter where you are.
And one last thing: since Slack can be used to chat about clients, and potentially WITH clients, you’ll need the Slack Plus plan that’s around $15 per month per user that includes compliance exports of all your message so you keep your compliance officer happy.] Wealthbox CRM, an activity stream-based client relationship management app for wealth management firms, has announced an integration with Slack, the messaging app for business teams.
[And finally, this week’s episode wraps up with news from Smarsh, the archiving solution provider, as the company introduced enhanced archiving support for Microsoft Office 365 environments. As more of you move away from local servers to the cloud, you still need to fulfill your compliance and record-keeping obligations required by FINRA and the SEC.
By all accounts, Microsoft is moving full-steam ahead on cloud services, so it’s pretty much inevitable that as long as you want to keep using Word, Excel, Outlook and more, you’ll need to incorporate a compliance solution for the resources you manage in the cloud. In addition to archiving Office 365 email, the Smarsh solution can also capture content on Yammer as well as Skype for Business Online, formerly called Lync, which is Microsoft’s attempt to compete with Slack that I mention, oh, about a minute ago.] Smarsh®, the leading provider of cloud-based comprehensive archiving solutions for compliance and e-discovery, today announced enhanced archiving support for electronic communications within Microsoft Office 365 environments.