Learn how others are getting the most out of Praemium.
Achieving complete transparency
By Asset Builder Financial Services
Asset Builder Financial Services chose Praemium mainly because of its performance reporting, which enables an open and transparent dialogue with our clients about what the investment process is achieving. This is central to us building a trusting relationship.
At Asset Builder Financial Services we wanted more than a percentage return to tell the performance story.
We aim to meet with a client at least twice a year, if not quarterly. During these meetings we review their investment strategy, assess how well we are performing against their target returns, and discuss what adjustments need to be made. To do this effectively we need the tools to:
- Gather information about what the client has put in or taken out.
- Give feedback on previous investment decisions, asset allocation and risk levels.
- Look back at how market expectations compared with what really happened.
It is not always easy to get much more than a single percentage return figure from many platforms. Explanation of the methodology behind the calculation and proof of its validity is often not made available, let alone information about whether the return is before or after fees and expenses. We used to go to considerable effort to extract data in spreadsheets and do our own calculations to make sure our clients had important and accurate information about their investments.
Use the V-Wrap performance reports for a complete, concise and accurate picture.
Now all we have to do to prepare for a client review is print the V-Wrap portfolio performance report. In this one-page report we have all of the information we need to talk through with the client what they started with, exactly what they put in and took out and then break down the returns from the market and income. Importantly, the report gives percentage returns calculated both before and after expenses, and can be run for multiple periods to support our long-term approach. We have total confidence in the validity of the calculations. The report alerts us if the quality of data within the period is compromised by an ‘unallocated amount’. We then use the Portfolio reconciliation reports to isolate the source of the anomalies and take action before the client review.
The quality and standard of the V-Wrap performance reports has added credibility to our financial planning solution.
The performance reporting helps Asset Builder Financial Services achieve our objective of 100% data integrity and transparency. We have had to make some adjustments to the way we manage our portfolio data but this means we now have a much greater understanding of what is behind the calculations themselves. We can go into a client review meeting with confidence. Clients also really like the “returns over time” graph that shows a comparison with a benchmark index. (For example, when the market is up and they are weighted heavily in fixed interest, the gap between the portfolio and benchmark widens. When the market is down it proves that fixed interest is a good hedging mechanism because the gap is smaller.) This is a great way for us to educate our clients in how to assess their investments in comparison with the wider marketplace.
Integrated Portfolio Solutions needed a better way to access their information
By Integrated Portfolio Solutions
The Praemium Application Programming Interface (API) gives you the power to use your V-Wrap data in the way that most makes sense for your business.
We at IPS wanted to give our advisers the ability to access and use all of their clients' data from one place with one login. We also wanted an efficient way to do bulk reconciliations and compare day-to-day information that would ensure data integrity at all times.
The Praemium Application Programming Interface (API) has allowed us to build a custom solution that combines data from V-Wrap and our internal systems. IPS accesses data available through the Praemium API on a daily basis. The API has given us the freedom to work with data to ensure our advisers can get access to the information they need in the format they need. The single sign on (SSO) component also means that we can launch V-Wrap screens from our custom solution without the adviser having to separately log in to V-Wrap. Secondly, because IPS administers a large number of portfolios we developed a specific business process for analysing all portfolios at once. Data available through the API has allowed us to implement this and provides tremendous efficiencies in maintaining IPS' data integrity via daily reconciliations.
A tailored solution that harnesses the power of Praemium. The adviser clients of IPS relish the fact that they can log in to one system and have access to all client data - demographic and portfolio. The end result is that we have an efficient workflow platform and complete online solution. Internally, IPS has significantly reduced the time spent on management of data integrity.
IPS provides low-cost portfolio administration and SMSF services with an integrated administration platform built by financial advisors. IPS seamlessly integrates investment execution and portfolio administration, removing the complexities of dealing with numerous organisations. By embracing the latest in-house technology, adopting best practice, and leveraging off Praemium's market-leading portfolio reporting technology, IPS can be relied upon to be the core of any efficient advisory business.
Reducing the cost of reconciling portfolios
By Anne-Marie Penfold, Client Services Manager, Taylor Collison
Data integrity is paramount to all Taylor Collison’s investment administration functions. With V-Wrap’s new reports, reconciling their clients’ portfolios is now much simpler and cost effective.
At Taylor Collison reconciling cost movements and cash transactions is a critical business process, which until now has been a costly and time-consuming exercise for us.
Our clients entrust us to accurately account for their investments and to apply sophisticated methods to measure portfolio performance; this means enforcing very high standards for portfolio data management. At quarter-end and year-end we used to reconcile portfolios individually using a separate spreadsheet for each. This was particularly time consuming at year-end, taking an average of about 30 minutes per client. It took so long because we had to “reconstruct” cash books to reconcile investment cost movements, to confirm reported income and to calculate net capital movements. The disciplines which we impose across our business processes meant most accounts reconciled and needed no remedial action, but we could only be assured of this after wasting time preparing a separate reconciliation report for each client.
Use V-Wrap to calculate variances by cost movement and cash movement, and to produce accountant- and auditor-ready supporting documentation.
We now run the “Investment cost movements” and “Portfolio reconciliation” reports for each client portfolio. These reports help us to quickly identify any differences between reported and actual movements. We then simply update any necessary entries and finalise the client reports.
Based on our experience at quarter-end, we estimate that we will eliminate 60% of the time taken at year-end, or a saving of about 20 minutes per portfolio. The time saved is obviously better spent on the investment management process and providing a competitive service to our clients.
We have had to make only minor changes to how we record transactions to gain enormous benefit. The new reports can now be provided directly to accountants and auditors as supporting documentation. Also, internal controls are boosted because the reports can be run with no human intervention, be used for spot checks and be produced for multiple periods. Most portfolios can now be reconciled before end-of-quarter or end-of-year, reducing workload during these time-critical periods. This is particularly useful for accounts with complex transactions, where the simplicity of the task now enables more regular reconciliations.