Back in February, when we hosted our Experience Matters conference in London, little did anyone know what the next few months would bring.
Although the COVID-19 crisis has dominated headlines and our businesses over the past six months, the experience matters message that our CEO Noel Butwell underlined at the conference has continued to be a priority for us.
And in these challenging times, the importance of a quality experience is actually a more pertinent message than ever. With clients looking for reassurance, we know the positive experience we can offer you will, in turn, have a positive impact on your clients.
We also know, following feedback from you, that your experience of our service is hugely influenced by the user interface and client reporting that our platforms can provide.
It's why I'm really pleased to tell you that we're introducing a series of improvements to Standard Life Wrap that focus on reporting, cyber security and the launch of a brand new, modern and user-friendly client portal.
Our goal behind these enhancements on Wrap is to deliver a great and more seamless experience both to you and your clients, so helping you build and maintain trust in your client relationships.
And to continue to help support you in the value you can offer clients, these improvements are only the first step in a series of enhancements being made to Wrap's reporting suite, with the initial focus on valuations, performance and money movements.
A client portal offering a tailored view of investments
The continuous investment we're making in Wrap's reporting capabilities is keeping pace with a world where demand for more personalised digital experiences is rising.
Clients have increasingly high expectations when it comes to the immediacy and ease of access to information. And Wrap's new portal will help you deliver that personalised, online user experience for clients.
When coming up with prototypes for the design of the new portal, in addition to meeting modern usability and accessibility standards, it was really important to us that the portal was engaging for clients to use and that the information presented was easy to understand.
We carried out extensive market research, user testing and worked out what the best in the world looks like. What we've come up with is a simple and straightforward user interface with easy-to-use navigation. It's clean and uncluttered and focuses on simple valuations.
Accessible on any device, including mobile, and configured in your firm's branding if you choose, the main purpose behind the portal is to enable clients to view their assets in a really easy and clear format. But more than that, it will give them confidence that their assets are being well managed.
Protecting client information with improved security
With these latest enhancements on Wrap, we're bringing all parts of the platform up to the highest possible standard. This includes secure access to the client portal using an authentication process to rival the leading fin tech firms across the globe.
For the first time, clients can gain access through password self-service, saving you time. And while the portal allows them access to high-level plan information in an engaging way, using improved technology for security will also give them the peace of mind that their information is protected.
And as we adapt to a more digital way of working in a post-pandemic world, a high level of cyber security has perhaps never been more important.
At-a-glance snapshot report to support client conversations
Aligned to the client portal is our new client snapshot, which will enable you to share a snapshot of your clients' portfolios in a professional and easy-to-read report.
You can run off the snapshot report for clients at any time to provide key information at a glance, including valuations and performance. For those clients who don't want all the detail, simply a quick update, or aren't interested in accessing information digitally, these snapshots will be particularly useful.
The reports should not only help to support your conversations with clients and build trust, they can also help them feel better informed in uncertain times.
Enhancing oversight and governance
Last but by no means least, we've introduced a new income and withdrawal report. This will help enhance oversight, governance and account management within your firm.
The report is designed to help manage and support your clients taking an income, and it will be especially useful for managing your clients at retirement. It shows, at a glance, income, withdrawals and dividends over a specified time period and can be filtered by historical or next regular payment.
Being able to view activity across all your client portfolios in one clear report means you can target your activity more easily or step in quickly if you need to take action.
Helping to facilitate enhanced relationships with your clients
These Wrap enhancements further demonstrate the platform's flexibility and the choice it can offer you.
For example, if you want to present client information in a particular way, you can determine how much information is made available to each client depending on your relationship with them. You can also give greater insight incrementally on the value and performance of their investments.
But one of the biggest benefits of these improvements is the efficiencies they can add to your firm, helping you run a successful business. The enhancements should reduce the demands on your time so you can focus on key activities for clients and support them with more complex requests.
One other smart feature, as I've mentioned, is that the client portal can be configured to incorporate your firm's branding and contact information. It's a detail that should help your clients know that you're looking after their money, supporting your relationships with them.
As your platform provider, if we can provide you with the technology to help enhance your client relationships and give your clients absolute trust in you, then that can only be a good thing.
Looking to the future in these unprecedented times, we're continuing to focus on how we can deliver the experience principles Noel outlined at our conference at the beginning of the year. We want to be an effortless platform provider to do business with, delivering what matters most to you and your clients.
To find out more about our enhancements to Wrap, visit here, take a look at our FAQ document or speak to your usual Standard Life contact. To make sure we fully support your business with the launch of our client portal and secure authentication technology, we plan to roll it out to firms in phases from September.
The value of investments can go down as well as up and your clients could get back less than they paid in.
The views expressed in this blog should not be regarded as financial advice.