BUILDING THE FUTURE, TOGETHER
THREE YEARS FROM NOW, WEALTH MATTERS WILL MARK 25 YEARS IN BUSINESS. That’s a long time – long enough to look back with pride at what we’ve achieved so far, and to look ahead to what the coming years will bring. We’ve seen a huge amount of change since we opened our doors in 1999, in the type of business we do, the clients we work with and the people who make up our firm. We’ve grown the business, built lasting relationships, won prestigious awards and assembled a team of professionals committed to innovation and continuous improvement. We’ve seen tough times too – we found our way through the 2008 crash and the Covid-19 pandemic, but in every situation we’ve pulled together, drawing on our skills, our strengths, and above all our shared vision to succeed, whatever comes our way.
Much has changed, but more will change in future. If there’s one message our clients hear from us time and again, it’s the importance of planning. To build the future they want, the one they deserve, they need a clear vision, a plan to reach that vision, and the ability and commitment to see it through. That’s as true for us as it is for them, so we’d like to share our own vision for the next three years – a snapshot of the future. We’ll show you our vision for the business, our vision for clients and how the work we put in now will pave the way for a bigger, bolder future.
A quick look at the numbers Over the next three years we aim to grow revenues by at least 50%. We’ll do that by building a bigger, broader client base and by ensuring we have the staff and expertise to exceed their expectations.
2023 £3,500,000 2022 £3,175,000 2021 £2,800,000
HOW OUR VALUES SUPPORT OUR VISION FOSTERING FIVE KEY QUALITIES
Go the extra mile
is underpinned by five key values.
we’re here for our clients, whatever they need, whatever it takes.
Get it done
Make the client love you
we understand what’s needed and we get down to it.
we never forget who we’re serving. We’re honest, open and always. available.
Be a great team member
we support one another and we seek solutions.
we embrace challenges, overcome setbacks and continually improve.
TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS OPTIMISM, PASSION, EXCELLENCE A business like Wealth Matters must be ready and able to embrace a constant state of change. Nothing stands still – just as circumstances will change over the course of a client’s life, so we’ll meet new challenges, new demands and new ways of working. But we'll discover new opportunities, new ways to serve them better, new ways to help them realise their vision. We can’t do any of that if we sit back and assume we’ve done enough. Responding to change and taking new opportunities requires a team that’s always ready to improve, always thinking ahead. Recruiting the right people is only half of that story, we also need to continually invest in them, enhancing skill sets, offering opportunities to learn and rewarding achievements. We need to nurture pride and professionalism in what we do, to build a great place to work and encourage team members to function at their very best.
We’re always learning Where we can, we provide training opportunities from within, but we also encourage team members to take professional qualifications that enhance their technical knowledge and their ability to serve our clients. We recognise the effort that goes into extra learning in the workplace with salary increases and one-time bonuses, so that the rewards are both personally satisfying and practical. For staff who aren’t embarking on professional qualifications, we regularly review roles and responsibilities to make sure skill sets are aligned to responsibilities and to offer the opportunity to take on more challenging work. We also recognise that roles change over time and titles should reflect what team members actually do. Our administration team is the engine of the firm, but there’s also a key responsibility for ensuring clients receive a great service. For that reason, as the role has evolved we’ve retitled Senior Administrators as Client Relationship Managers, to better reflect their proactive ability to work with clients and ensure best outcomes are delivered.
We’re always progressing
In 2021 we’ll be taking on an additional Client Relationship Manager to provide support to our newest Financial Planner, but in a broader change we’ll also be introducing a brand new Financial Services Trainee role. It’s designed to provide an entry point into the industry for graduates, school leavers and career changers.
This year we’re asking team members to complete a survey that looks at ten different variables that impact our ability to operate at our best.
It’s a way to support our desire to train from within and a chance to instil our cultural values at an early stage of someone’s career, and help them reach their potential. The role will be an on-the-job learning experience that introduces them to the roles and functions within the firm. They’ll start with our Office Administrators and Client Relationship Managers, before progressing to more complex technical work within the Paraplanning team. Trainees will get involved in project work, building up their knowledge of all parts of the organisation from marketing to compliance. As with all staff, longer-term career planning will form an integral part of the development plan and we hope successful trainees will stay with us for many years, helping us expand the team and supporting growth, while bringing their own unique skills to us.
Why? Because motivation doesn’t come off the peg. To understand what makes people feel great about the job they do, we need to listen to their firsthand experience. At the same time, we’re expanding the scope of our company bonus scheme. As well as the usual bonus based on achieving annual revenue targets, we’ll introduce two new bonuses, the ‘Super Bonus’ and the ‘Dream Bonus’. The Super bonus will double the existing company bonus amount, while hitting the Dream bonus will more than triple it. If hard work results in hitting our higher revenue goals, we want the people who did all the work to reap the rewards.
TAKING CARE OF CLIENTS DESTINATION FINANCIAL FREEDOM A key part of our vision for the future is recognising who we are, who we serve and where we can add most value. As an Accredited Financial Planning firm with a highly qualified and experienced team, we’ll continue to focus on high net worth clients and see the average funds under management grow. This is an essential part of our strategy as we focus on achieving more with fewer clients, rather than adopting a mass market approach. This will allow us to build even stronger relationships with our clients as we can devote more time to them, helping them to achieve the financial freedom they deserve.
New Clients Over the next three years we’ll be concentrating on attracting clients who are a good match for the services we can offer. There’ll be new networking events, an increase in the quality and frequency of client hospitality events for existing clients and potential prospects, and a new referral pack that sets out our proposition. In 2020 we began offering webinars, which we’ll continue to run on a regular basis as they allow us to interact with many clients and provide exposure to guest presenters. As we move into later 2021 and over the next few years, we’ll expand this further to introduce seminar events allowing face-to faceinteractions.
Attracting new clients This year we’re targeting new clients with average investable assets to £750,000 rising to £850,000 in 2022 and £950,000 in 2023.
Generational planning In 2020 we took a big step into bringing estate planning work in house, partnering with Solidus, and this has opened the door to further insights into client families and intergenerational planning. We’ll look to take on the younger generation who may not fit our core criteria, but when the family relationship is accounted for are likely to be the core clients of our future. We should be aiming to build a strong relationship with them right now.
Accelerating Growth Organic growth through referrals is a great source of growth, but we’ll also continue to look at options in the market to purchase client banks, for whom we can add significant value. This will allow us to fine-tune our client banks for all advisers, giving us client banks of the right size and value to suit each adviser’s particular expertise and commitments.
New Opportunities In 2020 we began offering estate planning services and we strongly believe this can become a firm pillar to help drive our success. But we don’t want to rest on our laurels – we believe there’s scope to further build out this area of work by providing more opportunities for clients to take part in philanthropy, which provides a social good for the recipient charities, while making use of allowances to allow clients to give to causes close to their hearts.
TOOLS AND INNOVATION BRINGING TOGETHER IDEAS AND TECHNOLOGY Innovation is at the heart of Wealth Matters and we have several new initiatives in the pipeline.
A new approach to rebalancing Portfolio rebalancing is in itself a balancing act – do it too little and a portfolio will drift, but rebalance too often and any benefits are cancelled out by the costs and time involved. For that reason we carried out our own research to find the ‘sweet spot’ for improving returns without excess volatility and that research led to a brand new ‘Responsive Rebalance Approach’. While we found rebalancing every year works well, we can get better results for clients by only rebalancing when their asset allocation strays more than 10% away from the model allocation. It’s a more efficient way to hold money, it reduces administration and makes for better longer-term returns.
Retirement and a ‘bonds first’ strategy How clients can make best use of their investments depends on several factors, including the age at which they choose to retire and the value of their investments at that point. A ‘bonds first’ approach sees the proportion of investments that sit in bonds used first, leaving the equity portion invested. Once the bonds portion runs out, withdrawal moves to equities. The principle is to protect the overall value of the portfolio, allowing it to grow as much as possible over the first 10 years of retirement, generally seen as the riskiest period. A bonds first approach can be a more efficient way of taking an income with better outcomes, and for some clients it could result in significantly larger retirement portfolios. It’s another example of Wealth Matters’ technical progression, and we’ll be introducing this option as the ‘Value Retainer Strategy’.
Environmental, social and governance (ESG) With increasing demand for an investment option that sits comfortably with a client’s beliefs and concerns, we’ve introduced our new ethical portfolio, choice – WRAPS Halo. Once upon a time, sustainable investing meant giving something up, but not anymore. These days modern approaches mean that investors can target companies and bond issuers with high environmental, social and governance standards, without costing the earth, hitting their pocket or compromising on their beliefs.
Tools and technology As we introduce new innovations, we need to make sure the technological capability is there to underpin them. In recent years we’ve launched our client portal, allowing access to plan information and secure messaging options. We’ll be moving more document sharing onto this platform allowing direct sharing to our back office system, freeing up time for Client Relationship Managers. We’ll continue to review options for how clients provide information to us, updating our fact find document as well as identifying a cloud-based solution that can be trialled in 2021 with potential for transition for existing clients over 2022 and 2023. We’ll also be launching a brand new website based on new brand guidelines to modernise and improve the experience of prospects and existing clients. We’ll steadily add content including short videos, testimonials from clients and new ways for prospects to contact us, whether they’re booking a call or signing up to our quarterly newsletter.
BRINGING IT ALL TOGETHER A SHARED JOURNEY The next three years represent a huge opportunity to build on two decades of experience and take the organisation forward. It’s an exciting time, but to get it right, we’re looking at the big picture. Taking Wealth Matters to the next level is about developing the company, but it’s also about finding new ways to help our clients reach their goals, from the ways we interact, through to the technology we use to make those interactions seamless.
The nature of what we do means we’re always on a shared journey – the journey of our clients toward their ambitions, as well as the journey of team members throughout their careers. We’re looking forward to showing what Wealth Matters can do over the next three years and ensuring that we’re respected by the profession, trusted by clients and suppliers, and a continuing source of pride for those who work here.