Seems like every time you look, a new financial planning software application is being offered. This month, we present a review of Oltis Software LLC’s Finance Logix Visual Advisor (www.oltis.com). This is a powerful, graphically rich, sales-oriented program that is easy to use and would satisfy the needs of most planners except for those who want to model the effects of stock options and rental property, and perform a few other detail-oriented calculations.
Oltis was founded about five years ago and now has about 25 employees. The target market for this product is registered reps and RIAs, and while Oltis does sell and support products for independent advisors, it is mainly looking for enterprise-wide arrangements with banks, insurance companies, and broker/dealers. Oltis’s specialty is in customizing its software to firms with 30 advisors and up, including large institutions.
Finance Logix is a desktop application whose main goal is to improve client acquisition, retention, and loyalty, and the user interface is designed to be shown to clients. Impressive graphics illustrate a client’s current-versus-recommended portfolio and give you bar charts showing the differences year by year between current and recommended portfolios.
A green or red traffic light graphic illustrates whether your plan is succeeding, and the interface features pictures of families, retirees, and other smiling faces to give the application a friendly look that clients are likely to find appealing. Context-sensitive help comes up on the right side of every screen, explaining terms and making it easy for you to input client data.
The software contains a presentation tool that makes it easy to integrate Microsoft PowerPoint slides into a plan. If you drag and drop a PowerPoint slide into the program folder where Finance Logix is installed, you won’t have to switch between the two applications and the slides will show up in the file with the client’s plan.
Navigation is well organized, and drop-down menus are common in data input screens. So when you want to change a retirement plan for a particular account, you just drop down the menu and choose the account for which you want to change assumptions. Then you can pull on a slider to vary assumptions for that account’s annual return and the annual cash contribution you make to that account. If you want to vary asset allocations on Monte Carlo projections, you do it with pull-down menus.
Data input screens are clean and let you drill down to key in more detailed entries. The program comes with an XML- or XSL-capable export and import feature, so a B/D or large advisor office could write a script to push and pull data from Finance Logix to other open-database applications. A small but enterprising RIA could also do this, but it would require some custom programming.