Practice Management

LPL expects its tech improvements to give advisers back an hour or more a day

CEO Dan Arnold pledges to help advisers focus on client service

Aug 20, 2019 @ 1:54 pm

By Ryan W. Neal

LPL Financial president and CEO Dan Arnold says time is one of the biggest challenges facing financial advisers today.

More specifically, a lack of time.

Advisers spend 40% of their time on average on administrative and office tasks rather than high priority work that can differentiate their practice or engage clients, Mr. Arnold said, citing data from Cerulli Associates.

At LPL's annual Focus conference for advisory firms on Monday, Mr. Arnold said the broker-dealer is investing in technology that will give advisers back at least an hour of each work day.

[Recommended video: How fintech is evolving the onboarding process for clients and advisers]

"We are going to meet you where you are in the evolution of your practice, transform how you spend your time and give you a leading client care experience," Mr. Arnold said. "By doing this we will create the next generation of wealth management as one team on one mission."

The firm's focus is on enhancing the ClientWorks platform with automated, digital and streamlined workflows. For example, the firm is updating the account opening process to eliminate 30% of fields and half the time it takes to open a new account. LPL plans for the enhancement to be available in the fall.

[More: Ramped up tech spending has helped LPL recruit advisers]

LPL is partnering with MyRepChat on a solution coming this quarter for advisers to compliantly send text messages to clients. The broker-dealer also has a new suite of virtual services today for advisers to outsource certain operational functions, such as financial operations, marketing and business administration.

[More: Cybersecurity concerns over messaging apps grow as more firms enable adviser texting]

In addition to helping them save time, LPL also provided advisers with an update on new models for operating their businesses on LPL's platform. The advisory-centric model is for advisers who want to exclusively offer fee-based services, and includes technology and workflows to support this business. LPL also will allow advisers to outsource risk management to LPL's corporate RIA, or let advisers operate their own RIA.

LPL's new employee model will allow advisers to retain ownership of their books of business and manage portfolios as they please, while giving LPL ownership of oversight, infrastructure and operations.

The firm also is developing a new model to improve how advisers connect with LPL's service team to receive faster and more accurate and consistent answers from subject matter experts.

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