Commonwealth Financial Network has launched a virtual administration program.
The program pairs advisors who need operational support with a Commonwealth employee who can assist in training, human resources management, technology and setting up the practice.
“This program takes the time-consuming, day-to-day tasks off an advisor’s plate,” Jon Bohs, senior vice president of brokerage operations at Commonwealth said in a statement, noting the support is “one-on-one support, not a pooled service.”
“By gaining an intimate knowledge of the firm they’re working with, [virtual administrators] recognize their advisors’ needs and work to maximize efficiencies so the advisor can focus on growing their business and training their staff for more client-facing work,” he added.
Advisors participating in the program are matched with a dedicated virtual administrator who acts as a part-time staff member for the duration of a six-month agreement, which can be automatically renewed, according to Commonwealth. VAs work for their advisors in eight-hour segments, up to 24 hours per week.
The tasks handled by VAs include document preparation, opening and updating accounts, transferring assets, updating customer relationship management and pulling reports, and providing direct support to an advisor’s clients, according to Commonwealth. The VAs will have access to Commonwealth’s CRM and an email address at the advisor’s domain.
The VAs will help Commonwealth improve its services to advisors through “critical feedback” they can give the firm from their understanding of an advisor’s practice and processes, according to Commonwealth.
When Commonwealth started the VA Program in beta, the firm thought some advisors needed help for around one or two days a week, according to Bohs.
“But what we found was that, by getting back more time, advisors were able to identify growth opportunities or impediments and take action to make improvements. It’s exciting to see how our program has not only provided operational support but has also been a springboard for helping advisors evolve their practices,” he said in the statement.
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