Over the past few weeks we’ve been discussing the new technology I’ve been considering as this year draws to a close. In this post, I’ll share my decision on the financial planning software I expect to choose.
To recap, I have been using an Excel spreadsheet with an add-in for Monte Carlo simulation for financial planning for the past 10 years. Although I like it very much, as my clientele grows, it has become increasingly difficult to keep up with the myriad of changes which must be made and the number of plans that must be updated each year. I have also noticed that as my business grows, technology integration is becoming more important. Why? Because I am required to do more in the same amount of time. Therefore, I have been on a quest to reassess my technology tools, including my financial planning application.
Over the past several weeks, I have taken a very close look at three best-in-class financial planning tools. They are MoneyGuidePro (In Search of the Best Financial Planning Software: MoneyGuidePro), NaviPlan (In Search of the Best Financial Planning Software: NaviPlan) and eMoney (In Search of the Best Financial Planning Software: eMoney).
In short, I ruled out MoneyGuide Pro because it is very light in the areas of income tax and estate planning. This left me with NaviPlan and eMoney. I must say, as planning tools, both are very detailed in all areas, including income tax and estate planning. This fact has led me to make a decision based not on the planning tool itself, but on the entire offering from each company.
The entire offering includes items such as integration plus any ancillary applications included with the product. For example, eMoney includes a robust account aggregation tool which allows users to link a client with their employer retirement plans, bank accounts, liabilities, etc. With this feature I would always have updated information on the client’s financials. In addition, eMoney contains a client portal and website where the client may view or print a report of their assets and liabilities at any time. This is a great feature which adds tremendous value. eMoney also integrates with many custodians, making it easy to update the client’s account information. Although Naviplan has some integration partners (e.g., with custodians), it does not have any other tools which compare to those offered by eMoney. Therefore, if I can work out a few details, I expect to select eMoney for my planning/aggregation/client website-portal application.
Those other details involve my current custodian, TradePMR. To be brief, eMoney was integrated with TradePMR’s former advisor platform, eCustody. However, eMoney is not integrated with Trade’s new platform, Fusion. Therefore, I need to find out if TradePMR is planning to create an interface to link with Fusion and eMoney. I’ll keep you posted.
Until next time, thanks for reading and have a great week!
See all the articles in this series on In Search of the Best Financial Planning Software.