How Broker-Dealers Can Use Pre-Populated Forms
Filling out paperwork is always a hassle. Writing the same information again and again, trying to understand opaque instructions, making sure you’ve got form 2056-AB and not 2065-BA — it’s enough to drive anyone a little crazy.
In wealth management, those problems are magnified. Paperwork issues can negatively affect the client experience, frustrate advisors, and increase workloads in the home office.
The stakes are high — forms with mistakes often send you back to the start of the process, extending timelines, increasing frustration, and taking a bite out of bottom lines.
While the forms themselves likely won’t disappear from the wealth management industry anytime soon, there are alternatives to the tedious, time-consuming processes of gathering the correct ones and filling them out. Pre-populated form technology can make broker-dealers, RIAs, and their advisors more efficient, productive, and profitable.
Pull the right forms for the job.
Which forms does an advisor need to pull in order to open an account for their client?
It seems like a straightforward question, but when you consider the hundreds of different types of accounts and their variations, it becomes a whole lot more complicated.
Many broker-dealers expect their advisors to be experts that instantly know which forms are required for which accounts. However, with thousands of forms to choose from, that expectation isn’t always reasonable. The result is mistakes and NIGO submissions.
A technology provider like Docupace with an industry-specific forms library can help alleviate these issues. After asking the advisor a few simple questions (Which brokerage are you using? Which state are you in? What type of account are you opening? etc.), the system uses intelligent form bundling to automatically pull the correct forms for the job, every time.
Fill out forms automatically.
One of the most frustrating things about paperwork is filling in the same information over and over.
For financial advisors, this can be especially tiresome — especially if their clients’ information already exists within a CRM or other system specifically designed to streamline the process. Copying over their name, address, income, etc. is unnecessary work that prevents them from doing the more important parts of their job, like actually talking to their clients.
Docupace integrates with popular financial services CRMs like Salesforce and Redtail to make manually copying client information into forms a thing of the past. Their API even makes it possible to link up any proprietary database with their forms processing technology.
The forms Docupace pulls are automatically populated with client information taken straight from the CRM, improving the advisor experience and helping them become more productive.
As an advisor fills out a form in the Docupace Platform, repeated fields are identified throughout the form bundle and automatically copied — no more entering the same information over and over again. The result is rapid completion of forms that would have otherwise eaten up valuable time.
Check compliance in real-time.
Unlike printed forms or simple PDFs, pre-populated forms within a platform like Docupace can be checked for SEC and FINRA compliance as they’re being filled out.
Docupace uses an advanced validation engine to check forms against SEC and FINRA rules as they’re being completed, alerting the user of any missing or incorrect information prior to submission.
Instead of sending in forms only to hear back weeks later that a mistake was made or a field was missing, advisors can correct errors in real time and dramatically reduce NIGO submissions.
Get documents signed fast.
One of the greatest advantages of pre-populated forms is the ability to add esignature capabilities.
Reliance on wet-ink signatures mean an abundance of printing, scanning, faxing, and mailing, all of which take time, cost money, and increase the risk of errors. And when errors occur, the printing, scanning, faxing, and mailing has to start all over again. It’s a vicious circle.
Many investors, especially the growing segment of millennials, balk at the idea of having to sign a document in person or print, sign, and scan. This amount of work for a signature seems antiquated compared to the streamlined systems they use in their day-to-day lives.
Pre-populated forms that are integrated with esignature tools like DocuSign and Signix solve these issues by enabling clients to sign their documents securely online. That means fewer errors, faster turnaround, and improved satisfaction for everyone.
Docupace provides pre-populated form workflows for many different lines of business with many different firms. For everything else, there’s Docupace Start — Docupace’s low-code experience builder.
With Docupace Start, broker-dealers can use a simple set of tools to create their own question-and-answer based workflows (think TurboTax). Virtually any account type, process, form, or database can be incorporated into Docupace Start to simplify the paperwork experience and eliminate the possibility of errors.
See Docupace Pre-populated Forms in Action.
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