What are the steps in the financial planning process?

In this video, Dianne discusses the process Financial Planners goes through with each of Future Planner’s new clients. She explains the steps they take to make sure that a strong relationship is developed with each of their clients from the very beginning. To find out more, watch the video below or scroll down to read the transcription.

Well generally, we receive a phone call from a client who may have been referred to us by another existing client. We have a brief conversation with them on the phone. They make an appointment to come and meet with us in our offices. We generally send them what’s called a financial needs analysis document. We also provide them with a financial services guide. That’s a legal requirement for us to let clients know who we are, who owns our business, and how we’re paid for what we do, and we provide those things before a client actually comes into the office. During our meeting, it gives us, both the client and ourselves, an opportunity to get to know one another.

We basically go through their circumstances. They can make a judgment as to whether they think the particular advisor and our particular business is the sort of business that will be helpful to them and that they can relate to. There always has to be some sort of chemistry there as well. And we provide them, hopefully, with some general ideas about what their options will be. We explain to them how we work, we explain further how we charge for what we do and we go through what the process is that they’re after.

And the general process is that we have a first meeting. We determine what the client’s looking for. We determine whether we think we can add value to that client. Following the first appointment, we always send a follow up letter that just summarizes our meeting. And it makes sure that both the prospective client and the advisor are on the same page, that they have the same understanding of what the discussions were and what the action items were and what the agreed next step is to be. And we also quote for the preparation of statement of advice.

So the client really knows exactly what they’re going to pay their advice, what to expect to see in their statement of advice, when it will be provided and what it’s going to cost them.