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3 Steps to Ace Your Tech Implementation

BY team practifi

Some of Practifi’s most enthusiastic users come from RIAs that planned out their implementation weeks, if not months ahead of choosing us as their CRM partners. No two businesses are alike, but we could not help but notice some similarities in the firms with smoother transitions that inevitably enjoy high rates of tech adoption. Whether you’re considering a switch to Practifi or adding another tool to your tech stack, these steps have proven to be drivers of success. 

1. Build your tech selection process from the bottom up

A modern CRM touches every aspect of a financial advisor’s business. So, your decision to choose a CRM should involve everyone, too. 

The most successful firms start their selection process well before they make a decision, and the choice involves more than the firm’s leadership. A good CRM selection committee should represent every team that has skin in the game: advisors, marketers, client service, and operations. Together, they build a list of their must-haves and dream features. They make it the north star of their selection process.  

We know an RIA has done their homework when we get questions like: “What does your minimum viable product look like?” “What is realistic to expect on day one?” “What will it take to get to the point where we can fire on all cylinders?” “Will you commit to adding a future feature we’ll need to your development roadmap?” When RIAs create a sharp vision of what they want from a technology investment, they lay the groundwork for a solution that meets their needs and sets them up for high adoption rates. 

Bartlett Wealth Management employed a thorough and collaborative approach to find the right CRM. Check out their story here. 

2. Start implementation with clean data

It takes a long time for RIAs to evaluate which tech is the right fit, but that’s only half the battle. Implementation is the other half. The biggest risk to your implementation strategy is the urge to copy-paste all your old data and processes. 

In many cases – especially RIAs switching from their first CRM – an advisory firm’s legacy data and workflows have become a mess. They chose Practifi because they were tired of working around their CRM, not with it! But if they ported over the same data, they would just end up recreating the same frustrating environment they were trying to get away from in the first place.  

The answer is to give existing data a hygiene pass that would make a dentist proud. Weed out duplicate entries, clean out inactive records, and create a standardized format that integrates smoothly into your new platform. 

3. A team effort and real expectations

We think an RIA’s tech partner should put in as much work as the RIA to make onboarding a smooth process. That looks like setting realistic expectations of what implementation will look like on day one, and how long it will take to use your tech to its full potential. Ease of communication counts for a lot, too. We believe in frequent, proactive communication and easily accessible lines of support should our users need help. 

That extends to learning how to use Practifi, too. We built PractifiU as an on-demand learning platform to package what you need to know in a way that makes the lessons easier to digest. With preparation and encouragement on the RIA side, we have seen firm completion rates of 95% or more. 

 This is the power of a start-to-finish, collaborative approach to implementation. Because everyone had a hand in the RIA’s decision, no one minds the sweat equity that goes into cleaning up data and transition, because they know it will save time and elevate their work in the new system. The payoff — a new engine to drive business growth and level up the ability to guide clients to their financial goals — is more than worth the effort. 

There are high stakes with any major investment in your business. Advisor technology is no different. Making big decisions and major changes can become a positive, energizing experience when you take it on as a team. 

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