Proceso de revisión con el Cliente
The planning process – Cyclical in nature
The financial planning process involves a series of steps and should be orderly, methodical, and comprehensive. The primary steps as illustrated in this diagram are to:
- identify the client’s goals and objectives;
- collect information about the client’s current situation;
- perform an analysis to identify problems and opportunities;
- develop a financial strategy that allows the client to achieve their goals and objectives;
- make a recommendations and action plan checklist to identify action steps needed to implement the strategy;
- client must make decisions for action and implement the recommendations.
You’ll notice the arrows revolving around the diagram. These illustrate the need for the process to be started again after its initial completion. Thus, it’s a cyclical process.
Not a once-in-a-lifetime event
When should a client start this planning process? Needless to say, the correct answer is that now is the best time to begin. Each time objectives are realized or changed, each time information changes, a new analysis and new strategy and/or new advice may be required. This is true for the whole of a client’s life. In other words, the process doesn’t end but is a lifetime commitment that should be repeated.
How to make the process happen
One of the best practices identified above was to ensure that your client understands that planning is a lifetime process. One of the best ways to indoctrinate your client is to set the stage for the review process during the presentation of the initial plan. The action plan checklist is an ideal tool to accomplish this goal. Let’s look at a sample action step in an action plan checklist and see how this can be done.
|*Dec/2010|| Joe Advisor
|Review your Personal Financial Strategy and update your Action Plan to recognize any needed adjustments resulting from changes in assumptions, changes in your situation, or changes in your goals and objectives.|
Notice above that the action plan checklist incorporates the action step of doing the review. This does two things. First, it reminds the client that the process is cyclical and, second, it acknowledges the fact that reviews are necessary because we know that changes will occur.
When your client is accustomed to the action plan checklist being the focus of your planning activities together, the review process merely becomes an accepted part of the process.
How to initiate the review process
In order to do a proper review of your client’s situation, it necessitates a trip through the six steps identified above. The first two steps require input from your client. You must review with them their goals and objectives to ensure that they are still relevant and to determine if there are any new goals. Secondly, you must review their current situation to ensure that any changes are recognized and also to confirm your starting point. This may be where you expected to be at this point in time, or might be quite different than expected. There are two primary ways to initiate this review process.
Option #1 – Collect facts using a review questionnaire and verbal discussion with client
This method provides an opportunity to build on your relationship with your client. Clients are also more likely to divulge a higher degree of detail during a conversation than they would if they had to fill out a review questionnaire on their own.
How it works: The advisor calls the client to confirm the time for the review. The call should be made approximately 30 days prior to actual review target date. Set a time for a telephone appointment or face-to-face meeting. It’s a good idea to ask the client to have their last plan report in hand for this appointment. This will allow the client to have a better frame of reference to answer the various questions you’ll be asking.
The review information should be collected using a review questionnaire. A sample review questionnaire follows. This document should allow plenty of room for notes. To make the fact collection meaningful, the advisor should spend a few minutes looking over the last report in advance of their discussion with the client. This will help to identify any peculiar issues that related to that particular client and let you ask pertinent questions.
Once all information is collected, either in person or over the phone, it is strongly suggested that you set an appointment time right then and there for when you’ll meet with the client to present the review report and commence implementation.
Option #2 – Collection of facts using a “mail-out package”
While a verbal discussion is preferable, sometimes it may be necessary to use this method. It takes longer and so should be used only where necessary. It often results in less information forthcoming.
How it works: Approximately one month prior to target review date, prepare a review package, which will be mailed to the clients. This package should include the review questionnaire and any excerpts from the previous report that you wish to include. Give client sufficient time to receive the package. Phone and confirm receipt and book an appointment when you’ll meet to collect the information requested and to identify questions you might have.
Alternatively, for out-of-town clients, you may arrange for them to mail the competed information back to you. However, whenever possible, a face-to-face meeting is the preferred method as it provides an opportunity to build your relationship with the client and to really find out what’s going on in their lives.
During your meeting with the client you should review the material they bring in for the following purposes:
- look for anything that’s missing;
- look for incomplete information;
- look for information that’s not clear and get further details;
- talk with the clients to identify anything (soft facts) that you should know about their situation.
When conducting the meeting, be sure to let your client know that you may need to contact them again to clarify things along the way. This positions you for future calls.