After careful consideration and due diligence, you’ve decided to change firms. Your excitement about moving may be tempered by what lies ahead — transitioning your practice. Whether you have undergone a transition previously or not, it’s safe to assume that most advisors view this as no small undertaking — and it’s not.
There are three immediate concerns advisors typically have when transitioning their practice:
- Client Retention — How many of my clients will move with me? Will I lose any of my top-tier clientele?
- Asset Retention — Are all of my assets portable to the new firm?
- Resumption of Revenue Streams — How quickly can I get the assets moved over and settled?
Unfortunately, while there is nothing you can do to guarantee against any of the above being an issue for you during your move, you can significantly reduce the possibility of each of these taking place.
Plan your work. Then, work your plan.
With transitioning, two big catalysts for apprehension are inactivity and disorganization. In this process, both are detrimental to the success of your move. While there is always a certain amount of angst when facing the unknown, you can minimize it by doing the following:
1. Prioritize your clientele and move the most critical clients first.
This is where having your client base categorized within a CRM will pay dividends. However, if you don’t have clients identified in some system, use this as an opportunity to prioritize which clients you should focus on moving first.
2. Work with your new firm to see if any products you currently have are unmovable. If they aren’t, determine what you will do with those assets.
More than likely, your new firm has solicited this information from you during your due diligence process. However, if you have any proprietary products or product lines you are currently using for which you are unsure about approval for continuation, be sure to ask. The last thing you want is to discover you are unable to use a vendor critical to your practice.