Standout technology updates that were highlighted Thursday during the online version of the annual Envestnet Advisor Summit included the announcement of a new, artificial intelligence-driven Recommendations Engine — the “Opportunities to Engage” Interface Powered by Envestnet Analytics — and more details on the new Envestnet Advisor Services Exchange by Dynasty, or ASx.
Envestnet developed the platform-wide Recommendations Engine that it said “analyzes big data to provide advisors with the intelligence needed to optimize their client relationships and practices.”
Those “timely, data-driven recommendations are presented in a comprehensive, streamlined ‘Opportunities to Engage’ dashboard, ensuring that both advisors’ businesses and clients get the most out of the Envestnet user interface,” it said.
AI is “being used now” in the engine, and machine learning “will be used as user adoption kicks in,” Frank Coates, executive managing director of Envestnet Analytics, told ThinkAdvisor.
But is “not a ‘black box’ solution — there are human domain experts defining many of the underlying rules and models that drive the recommendations that are important to advisors,” he pointed out.
Envestnet is “building this technology internally using our data science” center of excellence, he said, adding “there have been no external parties involved at this point.”
A Data Challenge
Crises like the COVID-19 pandemic “have a way of stressing our system, and what we’ve learned through this crisis is that we just weren’t distilling down our analytics in a way that would allow you the advisor to work through all the work you had to do during this crisis,” Coates said during the On-Demand session “WTF: Where to Focus.”
In response to that challenge, “in our new release, what we’re going to do is take those things that we can find in the data and make it super easy and tell you exactly what things we think you should do right now,” he said. That will be done through email and Envestnet’s desktop and mobile apps, he noted.
Nexus of Data, Analytics and Advisor Services
ASx was announced in January by Envestnet and Dynasty Financial Partners, who said they were teaming to launch it to provide financial advisors using Envestnet technology with more business tools and outsourcing services for growing their practices. At the same time, Envestnet disclosed it was acquiring a minority stake in Dynasty.
On Thursday, Envestnet said ASx was “developed with the specific focus of helping RIAs build their businesses,” adding the new platform is now available through the Envestnet Analytics Recommendation Engine.
ASx provides “actionable insights and solutions based on data and analytics” that are “uniquely designed to help RIAs efficiently grow their businesses, so that they can focus on their clients’ wealth management needs,” according to Envestnet.
During a Summit On-Demand session that was webcast, Edward C. Swenson, president of ASx, highlighted eight services available to advisors, including Capital Strategies and M&A Strategies that support the acceleration and growth of an advisory firm’s enterprise value.
The ASx launch is something “we have been working very hard on over the course of many months,” he said, adding, it “brings together the nexus of data and analytics and advisor services.”