What technology trend in wealth management is most closely tied to firm growth and advisor retention? Many industry observers would likely answer “digital” or ‘“frictionless process automation.”

However, there is a strong contender for any firm looking to grow assets and court (or keep) top advisors: Discretionary Portfolio Management (DPM)* technology.

We partnered with F2 Strategy to shed light on this trend, to define and sift through the nuances, drivers, frustrations, and best practices around DPM programs. Read our findings in the research paper Customization vs. Control in Wealth Management: Advisor Discretion Doesn’t have to be a Zero-Sum Game.

The analysis is based on F2 Strategy’s qualitative research, including interviews with nearly a dozen executives from wealth management and consulting firms, review of past analysis, and — perhaps most importantly — F2 Strategy’s first-hand experience in reviewing these tools and deploying them to advisors.

The primary audience for this research is strategic decision makers in the advisory business, including broker-dealers, banks, wirehouses, and service providers.

In this paper we will delve into the trends and perspectives currently driving the market, specifically:

  • What’s driving the growth in DPM?
  • How are firms and advisors managing the tension between control and customization?
  • What technology is needed to run DPM successfully?
  • What are some next steps wealth management executives can take?

We hope that our readers will use this paper to learn how they can improve their DPM programs through the best use of technology and enhancements to their operating models, and what this means for their business decisions going forward.

* While commonly referred to as Rep-as-Portfolio Manager or Rep-as-PM programs, this advisory model is more widely adopted in our industry than simply by brokerage reps.

So for the purposes of our analysis, we have coined the term Discretionary Portfolio Management (DPM) to define the advisory model used in different types of firms throughout the industry.