As the world of financial planning evolves, so too does the technology that supports it. And in the coming years, nothing may evolve in the world of advisor technology as much as financial planning software, as it continues its transition from simply being a ‘calculator’ to project the impact of financial planning strategies and recommendations, into an entire platform for ongoing collaborative financial planning for clients.
Yet the evolution of planning software is creating distinct new challenges from a software design perspective, as the tools are increasingly used in three distinct contexts: an interactive collaborative planning tool between advisors and clients in meetings, an ongoing monitoring and personal financial management (PFM) tool for clients, and an advisor support tool for everything from complex analyses to tracking and alerting which clients need assistance. Not to mention the increasing amount of ‘meta data’ available about the advisory business and its clients as well.
In fact, going forward financial planning software designers may need to increasingly view the use of the software through each of these distinct lenses – advisor, client, and advisor-client interaction, as well as business meta-data – to advance the efficacy of planning software, as each use case for planning software is creating its own unique needs and challenges for advisors to work with clients and enhance client outcomes!