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A Holistic approach to client care is essential.

In the last edition we discussed the fact that your clients and indeed ours in the financial planning community do not think in silos, because the problems to be solved, or advice required invariably crosses disciplines. It is against this very real backdrop that the expression ‘holistic client care’ becomes less a trendy catchphrase and more an essential approach.

In the financial planning community, we have over the past 20 years of more, moved away from offering transactional advice on individual aspects of finance, such as protection, investments and retirement planning, recognising that approach to be flawed. Far better to consider a client’s overall current financial position and more importantly their desired journey through life, incorporating goals and aspirations along the road.

However, we cannot do everything that needs to be done to give our clients’ plans the best chance of success on our own. We can use cash-flow modelling, consider inflation, tax regimes and which products or tax wrappers, of course, but we will also need to outsource where external expertise can supplement and enhance our own. An obvious example for us at Matrix Capital would be to outsource investment strategies to complement our financial plans to carefully discretionary fund managers.

In exactly the same way, when we implement financial plans, they are for the long term and will need to take into account numerous ‘what if’ scenarios. This is where our holistic approach, to be fully effective, requires us to outsource to qualified private client solicitors to established LPAs, wills and occasionally trusts to complement and underpin our client strategies.

Not surprisingly therefore, it is our firm belief that a similar approach will be effective for the solicitor community. Not only because, just as our financial planning clients need ancillary legal advice and support, your clients will frequently need financial planning. Whether it be clients considering care or future care for elderly relatives, those going through separation, or trusts needing to invest to meet objectives, or families consider how best to ensure their children inherit tax efficiently, your advice simply must be enhanced and complemented by ours.

Also, not offering this holistic and comprehensive approach can mean clients only getting part of the available solutions, which cannot, using your own regulatory parlance, be in their best interests. It might also mean dissatisfied customers down the line, which cannot be good for business growth. Client retention, where legal advice is often, by definition transactional, is difficult enough for law firms, and working holistically for your clients with carefully chosen fellow professionals can truly provide the clue that makes them stickier.

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