(This is a guest post by technology and digital media specialist, Jay Palter.)
by Jay Palter
When Dave Faulkner set out to design a new financial planning software, he had one primary goal in mind: to create a powerful tool that was simpler and easier to use than all the rest.
He saw many advantages in doing this. For instance, a simpler tool would mean more advisors could offer planning services to their clients. Also, advisors would spend less time crunching numbers and more time advising and helping their clients. Perhaps most importantly, a simpler tool would help clients to gain a better understanding of how their planning decisions would affect their financial futures.
For this article, I reached out to a number of financial planners and advisors that are actively using Razor Plan in their practices. Here are three of their stories.
Razor Plan helps Scott Plaskett focus more time on advising clients
Scott Plaskett owns and operates Ironshield Financial Planning, based in Etobicoke, Ontario.
Ironshield offers a range of financial planning programs and services to clients for a fee. For Plaskett, making the financial planning process a deliberate first step allows the client to really understand the plan and what’s involved in implementing it.
Razor Plan is the foundation of engagement with financial planning clients, says Plaskett. “Clients love the summary report page because they can see their options progress,” he adds.
As a former user of more complex financial planning software products, Plaskett became frustrated with their arduous process. Scenario planning was very involved and became a long drawn-out process.
“And it didn’t matter what scenario you created,” Plaskett says. “It never turned out that way.”
With a growing business, Plaskett faced a choice: hire a full-time financial planner or find better software.
That’s when he discovered Razor Plan and its unique approach to financial planning. Since we can’t predict the future, we don’t know what scenarios will unfold. But, Plaskett notes, we DO know what the options are.
Plaskett gathers data offline with his clients, then enters that data into Razor Plan and reviews the results with clients using the software. Razor Plan has so much more logic built into the calculations that it makes it easy for him to model different scenarios quickly.
“The software handles all the heavy lifting and allows me to spend more time advising my clients.”
~ Scott Plaskett.
Aurora Tancock’s clients know how ready they are for retirement
Aurora Tancock operates a financial planning practice, Aurora Tancock Financial Services, in St. Catharines, Ontario that specializes in retirement and estate planning.
Tancock loves the ease of use of Razor Plan, compared to other financial planning software in the marketplace.
Typically, she conducts a fact-finding meeting with clients after which she inputs their financial information into Razor Plan. Then, she brings clients in for a subsequent meeting and walks them through the information and analysis in the Razor Plan application.
The retirement options screen clearly shows if the client is on target and then allows Tancock to make easy adjustments to illustrate how working longer, saving more or taking greater risks with their investment portfolio will affect their readiness to retire.
Tancock meets with clients annually to review and update their financial plans. During these meetings she projects the Razor Plan software onto a television monitor which allows clients to easily see their progress towards their goals and feel part of the process.
“Clients love especially the one page summary that shows them where they currently stand and the four options they are given to work towards their goals.”
~ Aurora Tancock
Dan Anders likes Razor Plan’s client-centered design
Dan Anders is an independent estate and insurance advisor, based in Vancouver, BC. He specializes in the financial aspects of estate planning, and works with a national financial institution as well as his own clientele.
According to Anders, the financial industry has been doing financial plans the same way for the past 30 years and most clients don’t get much value from a 40-page financial plan. “What clients want is to know,” he adds, “is if they are on track for meeting their goals and what are the potential pitfalls along the way? That’s the beauty of Razor Plan – it gives clients the information they need and want,” says Anders.
Anders has used many of the competing financial planning products on the market and he likes the simplicity of Razor Plan. “It’s client-centric,” he says. “Most other planning software is designed for planners, but Razor Plan is designed for the client. And they express great appreciation frequently, because for the first time they clearly understand what we are trying to do for them.”
In his practice, Anders uses Razor Plan to offer clients affordable and meaningful planning services. Since financial plans are dynamic, they create meaningful reasons for him to sit down with his clients on a regular basis and stay up to date.
“As an estate and insurance professional, I’m not sure how you make an insurance recommendation WITHOUT a financial plan.”
~ Dan Anders
Your clients will thank you!