How does ‘client experience’ impact our technology investments?


October, 2015 |

By Jeff Fuhrman, Chief Operating Office and Chief Technology Officer

The investment decisions we make as a firm are not constrained to the financial markets. In fact, a significant portion of those decisions relate to our business expenditures and can be just as important.

Staffing considerations, communications outlays and professional service-provider decisions are among the many areas in which we invest in our company. By deploying our own capital in this manner, we exhibit a philosophy that is about seeking the most suitable choices to improve our clients’ experience.

When it comes to technology, our approach is no different and is also built upon a client-centric perspective. In practical terms, this means that we’ll invest in technologies which empower our clients with an array of relevant information and give our team the necessary tools to execute their roles with efficacy and accuracy.

In other words, those technological resources equip Coastal Bridge Advisors and our clients alike as we enhance our ability to deliver high-quality service.

We use technology for everything from financial planning, portfolio analytics and manager research to document management, portfolio reporting and account aggregation. We further use technology for uses ranging from billing and trade order management to CRM and compliance.

As a business facing a multitude of applications and sources of technology, our decisions about where we invest become all the more significant. So, how do we choose which technology to use? Below are a few benefits we consider critical to the selection process:

Transparency: As fiduciaries, we are legally responsible for putting our clients’ interests ahead of our own. In this vein, we must be certain our clients have a complete understanding of how they are invested, how much they are paying in fees and how their portfolios are performing against predetermined benchmarks.

Access: We want to ensure our clients are equipped with comprehensive and updated access to their financial information at all times. This access needs to be balanced with appropriate security controls and verification requirements in order to protect the privacy of our clients’ information.

Customization: For all clients of the firm, we develop a bespoke financial blueprint based upon the individual needs of their families. The technologies we choose must be flexible enough so that the information clients receive is not only accurate, but set up in a way that’s convenient and tailored to their respective plans.

Service consistency: As our team expands, so too do our resources and ability to provide quality service. At the same time, our technology must support our business processes such that our high standards of service delivery are always maintained and our clients receive consistent and uninterrupted service.

Scalability: Similarly, as the needs of our clients evolve, we seek technologies that are going to provide solutions for many years to come. We expect our technology to seamlessly accommodate the growing demands of our clients with the potential to expand accordingly.

It goes without saying that the feedback we hear from clients is an invaluable measure for what is working and what needs to be improved upon. We are always on the lookout for innovative ways to improve the client experience through our technology investments. We seek best-of-breed solutions befitting our clientele and continuously vet new technologies that may be more appropriate.

Consequently, when we make the appropriate technology investments, we believe an improved client experience is the ultimate reward.

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Jeff Fuhrman

Jeffrey Fuhrman is the President of Coastal Bridge Advisors.  In this capacity, Jeff is responsible for the human capital, financial management, operations, technology and marketing efforts of the firm. In a career spanning over 20 years, Jeff has held key operational and financial roles across a variety of industries proving successful as an accomplished executive with a record …

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