62% improvement in profit, increased job satisfaction for everyone
Rebecca Taylor is (by design) the only adviser supported by two paraplanners and three admin staff. Dunham’s specialise in provision of top quality financial planning advice and deal with clients in Peterborough and London.
The challenges that needed addressing
- To turn the vision of what they wanted their service to be into reality and to communicate a fee based proposition to clients in a manner they would understand and be willing to pay for.
- To move their existing clients who were used to receiving ‘free’ advice across to the new proposition and to attract more suitable clients going forward.
- To develop an efficient and cohesive system for delivering advice driven by the right staff, and to build a team around Rebecca rather than simply hiring more advisers who didn’t fit the businesses advice driven culture.
- To raise the quality of the new clients they attracted to the business.
What did FP Advance do?
In Rebecca Taylor’s words …
Created a first meeting presentation
With the help of FP Advance we developed a first meeting storyboard presentation that clearly explained who we are as a business and what we do for our clients. This allowed clients to understand exactly what they were paying for and the service that could be expected. We then had the justification for receiving a more substantial fee which helped our profitability and most importantly clients didn’t expect it all to be provided for free.
Established a review service
Having explained what we wanted to deliver to clients we had to establish a formal review service that would deliver ongoing advice and value to clients consistently. FP Advance helped us create a review service process that was simple, efficient, and profitable; in fact we increased our review charges significantly as a result and I feel confident we deliver more value to our clients then ever before. The impact on the bottom line for us has been noticeable.
Segmentation, targeting, and positioning
We worked through a clearer client segmentation, targeting and positioning with FP Advance and are now clear on exactly who we are after as clients, and have started to position the business to appeal to this target market. The results speak for themselves; we are attracting higher quality clients who have the desire and ability to pay for our service at levels that are profitable for us but still great value for them. This focus has meant we have developed specialist knowledge and more efficient strategies for our target clients as their issues are broadly similar.
Once we became clear on what we did and who we did it for, we were able to re-structure our staffing. Rather than focusing on more advisers, or inappropriate staff, used to working in a sales environment culture (which had been dragging the good staff down) we focused on supporting my efforts as the only adviser and building a support team around me.
Costs have actually increased because of this but the business now works, and with our improved ability to charge for up-front and ongoing review work our profitability is still rising. All staff that work for us now ‘get it’ and we deliver high quality work, on time for all our clients.
- Our conversion rate from enquiry to client is now over 86%. Clients are now happy to pay as they realise we are providing a service not simply selling products.
- Profitability has increased by 62% over the last 12 months. Previously we produced a report and hoped the client would buy a product to cover our costs. Today we produce advice that is paid for regardless of what the client decides to do. Where previously we lacked some confidence in what we charged (which clients picked up on) we now no longer have any queries relating to fees.
- Our target A and B class client numbers have increased by 87% over the last 12 months providing greater reward for business effort.
- The business processes we have put in place, driven by a strong team of committed people mean the business can continue growing while delivering outstanding strategies and service to our clients.
- In January 2007 Dunham Financial Services was awarded New Model Adviser of the year for the East of England region.
Rebecca Taylor APFS, CFP