It’s easy for LPL Financial advisor Rick DiStefano to remember Administrative Professionals Day each year, because it falls near the anniversary of when he hired virtual admin Veronika Thruston.
“I know exactly when I began working with Veronika,” DiStefano said. “It was April 18, 2017.”
For the prior five years, DiStefano says, he “did it all” when it came to opening accounts and updating client information. “It was a lot of work!”
His practice in Phoenix, R&D Financial Services — which has about $40 million in client assets — could double this year. And San Diego-based Thruston is a big reason for that potential growth.
According to LPL, the independent broker-dealer began a Virtual Admin program in 2017. It now includes 75 admins who work with roughly 200 affiliated advisors.
Those using the service — which is free for three months to new recruits — find the program’s results more than pay for itself: a 70% decrease in rejected paperwork, 50% drop in service calls and 11% growth net new assets, the IBD says.
Broader Growth Strategies
For DiStefano, the relationship with Thruston dovetailed with his move to become a fee-based practice.
Working with LPL practice-management consultant Don Williams and one of Williams’ colleagues, he developed a plan and then “transitioned all my commission business to fee based,” the advisor said.
This meant the “Veronica was helping me move $20 million to $30 million in assets” over the into new accounts over the past three years or so.