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Orion Makes Planning Tool Available for Free to Advisors Working Pro Bono

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What You Need to Know

  • The move is intended to encourage advisors to volunteer as demand for financial planning has surged due to the pandemic.
  • The offer is open even to advisors who don't use the firm's wealthtech platform.
  • CEO Eric Clarke is on the board of the Foundation for Financial Planning, which supports pro bono services.

Orion Advisor Solutions is now making its Orion Planning tool available free to all advisors serving pro bono clients, regardless of whether they use Orion’s wealthtech platform or not.

The move was intended to “encourage advisors to volunteer their expertise in a time of extraordinary need,” the company said Thursday. The pandemic “fueled a surge in demand” for financial planning that addresses clients’ immediate and long-term goals, Orion said, noting that, over the past 12 months, the adoption of Orion Planning grew 250%.

The company already made Orion Planning a part of its core technology offering. But Orion is now waiving data aggregation costs for pro bono clients of advisors already using its technology.

“By waiving data aggregation fees for pro bono clients, Orion makes it easy for advisors to connect outside accounts, such as credit cards, bank accounts, and 401(k)s to Orion Planning,” the company explained.

Orion Planning works in conjunction with the Orion Client Portal, giving pro bono clients a “one-stop” mobile app to understand and control their finances, the company said. “The portal’s integrations eliminate the need for clients to juggle multiple logins and apps, increasing engagement and warding off ‘portal fatigue,’” it added.

Orion notes it is a “major supporter” of the Foundation for Financial Planning, a charity that supports pro bono planning. Eric Clarke, Orion CEO and founder, sits on FFP’s board of trustees and corporate advisory council.

“Last year, I joined my colleagues on FFP’s Corporate Advisory Council in calling for advisors to pledge at least 25 hours of pro bono service every year,” Clarke said in a statement. “The lasting financial hardships of COVID-19 make it clear that we need all hands on deck to help the people in need.”

(Pictured: Eric Clarke, CEO of Orion Advisor Tech)