Charles Stanley Embraces WDX’s CRM Solution to Drive Superior Client Outcomes, Digital Transformation and Business Efficiency

At the beginning of 2014, Charles Stanley, one the UK’s largest Wealth Management firms, embarked on a technology program to put superior client outcomes at the centre of their investment management and financial planning business. And in the process, lay a foundation for digital transformation of its client engagement model and radical business process re-engineering of its day to day operations.

At the time, the industry was under pressure from the Financial Conduct Authority to demonstrate its commitment to mitigating the risk of detriment to customers from unsuitable portfolios, and to instituting best practice in response to the FCAs thematic review of the industry.

Charles Stanley engaged Wealth Dynamix to install its WDX CRM solution to help transform the way new business and ongoing client reviews were implemented, allowing investment managers to demonstrate suitability through the systematic capture and review of Know Your Client information. WDX orchestrated new suitability workflow processes to record client attitudes to risk, capacity for loss and knowledge & experience and embed quality assurance, automated exception handling and compliance oversight into front office activity.

Wealth Dynamix implemented its WDX CRM solution within 5 months so that the front office could begin an organisation wide review of its entire client book.

WDX was delivered into a complex business structure and technology environment.

The initial deployment involved significant integration to existing systems using the WDX APIs.   The orchestration of the client review and new business processes at Charles Stanley requires detailed two way integration with JHC’s Figaro and Bita Risk from Cor Financial Solutions and the Hitec document management system DS32/DSX.

WDX’s domain expertise was also utilised to help manage the review of client and portfolio data and existing manual new business and client review processes.   WDX had to support a complex data access model to maintain strict data protection rules across Charles Stanley’s extensive network of individual users, teams and business units.

WDX staff also took a lead in the change management and user adoption program, as well as assisting in staff training and internal logistics.

To date over 60,000 client suitability portfolios have been reviewed and more than 7000 new business accounts have been approved through the WDX platform.   WDX now represents the source of all customer KYC data and the originating system for all new client accounts.

Michael Bennet, Charles Stanley Chief Operating Officer commented;

“The need for regulatory compliance and our desire to further enhance the efficiencies of our front office was set in the context of an aggressive timetable and specific requirements. We needed to adopt a technological approach and were able to use the WDX product built on an industry standard platform which they tailored for our specific needs and delivered on time and on budget.”

By design, the roll out of suitability review and new business processes in 2014 was just the beginning of a wider business transformation program, and WDX has continued to deliver new client management capability across a number of key activity streams.

WDX captures all requests for amendments to client data received in the front office for validation and execution by the operations team, vastly reducing the turnaround time for client amendments. Charles Stanley process around 500 client amendment requests per week by the front office. WDX also provides an FCA compliant complaints process, allowing the firm to capture all client feedback, monitoring responses and escalating where appropriate according to industry best practice guidelines. Also provided to support suitability were peer review processes and a sampling methodology helping to put in place a robust and focussed oversight mechanism.

WDX supports marketing automation across the Investment Management and Charles Stanley Direct business units, this generates large volume email communication and also allows targeted customer correspondence, including customer surveys and periodic newsletters.

WDX supports both the Charles Stanley Direct and Charles Stanley Corporate Websites, enabling clients to interact with support staff and investment managers digitally via tasks and secure messages, saving time and providing real time updates.  This integration is also assisting the firm to change customer behaviour, by encouraging clients towards self-service as part of its ongoing digital strategy.

Charles Stanley have a number of new initiatives planned for 2016, building upon the successful implementation of the WDX platform that has become the cornerstone of all client related activity across its core Wealth Management business operations.

WDX will integrate the Financial Planning business unit into the existing client review and new business processes, including the capture of the Charles Stanley FP Questionnaire data and the ability to generate that form as an editable .pdf document, replacing existing offline and manual functionality. This will allow a view across all Charles Stanley Financial Planning and Discretionary Managed clients.

Charles Stanley will also make use of WDX’s Intermediary Module to help manage their distribution network, from capturing activities and leads to running events and distributing marketing.

Charles Stanley will review the new WDX Insight module to exploit the rich set of customer and operational data it has now built up, to drive further business insight and innovation.

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