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Most advisors view regulations in negative light

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More than 7 in 10 financial service sales professionals identify rigid legal, regulatory or oversight rules as the two top negative elements of their job, according to a new report.

HNW Inc. published this finding in a nationwide survey of more than 200 sales professionals. Unveiled at a media breakfast in New York on Tuesday, the survey polled both financial and non-financial sales professionals, each comprising 50 percent of the survey respondents.

More than a quarter (27 percent) of the survey respondents says that compensation opportunities and the firm’s reputation are the two top positive elements of their job. Fewer of those polled cite among the two top elements:

–independence (22 percent)

–autonomy (15 percent)

–interacting with fellow employees (13 percent)

–The intellectual simulation they receive (13 percent),

–Hours spent on the job (12 percent).

When asked which channels are most effective for interacting with existing clients, nearly 8 in 10 respondents (77 percent) flag in-person communications. A smaller proportion (74 percent) identifies phone calls; and just 49 percent point to e-mail.

The advisors surveyed devote on average 36.8 percent of their time directly interacting with or managing client affairs. They spend less time prospecting for new clients (19.7 percent), managing staff (16.2 percent), managing internal-facing activities (12.4 percent), engaging in marketing activities (8.3 percent) and addressing corporate oversight or regulatory issues (5.9 percent).

Additionally, more than 4 in 10 (45 percent) of the financial service professionals polled say they need more technology resources and support to stay in touch with their clients.

Most of the respondents (68 percent) currently rely on a customer relationship management (CRM) system that houses client contact information. Significantly less than half use mobile sales tools (16 percent), systems that allow them to track and measure content usage (21 percent) or solutions that customize and distribute client-ready communications digitally (30 percent).

Less than half (45 percent) of the financial service professionals say (1) they have the ability to personalize marketing and sales materials for clients; and (2) indicate that the capability is important. Still fewer financial service sales professionals use social media—Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn—to prospect with clients (29 percent), conduct client communications (19 percent), build personal brand (25 percent) or gain market insight (18 percent).