TD Ameritrade Institutional [TD] announced a set of practice management initiatives, in a bid to win over a major share of business from so-called breakaway brokers and advisors leaving large independent advisory firms.
Atop the list of measures is Maximize My Business, a practice management program that lets advisors choose from a set of customizable resources. The framework is designed to enhance seven essential business areas of an advisor’s practice, as identified by TD Ameritrade: marketing and business development, business operations, client service, risk management, practice equity and planning, educational resources and human capital management.
Maximize My Business gives advisors access to in-person consultations, Webcasts, conferences, guidebooks and educational white papers.
TD Amertirade built the new program on the success of Roadmap, a business-consulting program that it launched in December 2008, and which has worked well for its advisor clients. Results show that 60% of firms achieved business growth in the first six months of executing a plan using Roadmap.
“It rounds out what we do with the Roadmap,” said George Tamer, a director at Jersey City, N.J.-based TD Ameritrade Institutional. Maximize My Business offers a peer group called the Advisor Transition Mentor Council, which identifies advisors who are considering leaving a wirehouse, join a new firm or sell their business and puts them in touch with other professionals who have gone through the same process.
TD Ameritrade is the latest of the large clearing and custody firms, to unveil a range of changes meant to capture more business from the hybrid and registered independent advisor channel. Yet Tamer downplayed the competitive aspect of the company’s recent announcements, saying the focus is on the advisors.
“The offerings we are putting in place … can give the advisors a leg up on their competition and tools they need for being better business owners,” he said in a phone interview on Monday.
TD Ameritrade announced its initiatives at its national conference in Orlando last week, which attracted more than 1,200 advisors, according to Kristin Petrick, a senior manager of communications and public affairs for TD Ameritrade Institutional.
For advisors prospecting for 401(k) business, TD Ameritrade is making it easier for advisors to capture a portion of the $2.6 trillion market. It is offering the ability for advisors to provide plan advice and managed participant-level portfolios to help advisors handle clients' self-directed brokerage accounts. This component would also allow advisors to potentially capture IRA rollover dollars.
The firm also introduced a service scorecard system, which measures how well TD Ameritrade helps advisors in the areas of account maintenance, call times and account opening. Executives and staff members will be subject to the scoring system, Tamer said.
“We have a common goal to execute what is important to them and doing it in a timely manner,” he said. “We are more than a custodian that clears checks and places their trades.”