Inefficient account opening processes are leading to client defections and advisor dissatisfaction with broker-dealers, according to a report released by Aite Group on Tuesday.

"Account opening is not just a back office problem, it's also a front-office problem," said Sophie Schmitt, a senior analyst at Aite who wrote the report. Schmitt.

Of the 500 U.S. financial advisors surveyed, Aite found that 56% of advisors lost clients due to an error in the account opening process that took too long to fix. Another 48% of advisors lost clients because the account opening process itself took too long.

The report also showed that advisor satisfaction with the broker-dealer was negatively impacted by "immature" account opening solutions.

For firms lacking complete visibility into the process, 34% of advisors were very dissatisfied.

Similarly, for firms where opening processes are not completely integrated with other business applications 36% of advisors reported being dissatisfied.

Although broker-dealers are generally heeding the warning signs by investing in technology and workflow capabilities, at many firms, the account opening process is still lacking.

But this process represents a very important step for advisors.

"It's about setting expectations and showing that their practice has professional processes and the advisor demonstrating that they can deliver." Schmitt said. 

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