The end-to-end platform aiming to help advisers recommend, process and review
Digital Wealth Systems platform DIGI was built with the objective of helping adviser firms provide time and cost-efficient recommendations, reviews, and on-going monitoring to their clients.
DIGI is aimed at firms delivering advice to clients with modest assets and/or providing simplified investment services. It is a web-based platform that is designed to help advisers connect with their clients, recommend investments, and perform compliant reviews in a cost and time effective manner. DIGI provides firms with their own, white-labelled, and customisable, platform and client portal. Though a limited list of integrations with Practice Management Systems is currently available (Iress, Intelliflo and Adviser Cloud) our understanding is that DIGI will work on this as uptake for the tool increases. However, we do wonder if this might be achieved faster using the Origo Integration Hub.
The platform sitting behind DIGI is provided by SECCL however, the User Interface (UI) and Technology provided on the front end is all built in-house by Digital Wealth Systems. For the time being firms can only use DIGI if they are recommending P1 Investment Management portfolios (as part of the joint venture between DIGI and P1). DIGI have confirmed that they will look to add other DFM’s in the future but this will mainly be driven by adviser demand. P1 provides DIGI with current valuations, full asset breakdowns and transaction histories (that are automatically updated on the platform and client portal) and allows users of DIGI to manage their clients’ investments from within the tool. This functionality is designed to save a significant amount of time when processing client recommendations and placing trades. There are currently sixteen model portfolios available with varying Risk Profiles, Investment Styles (Hybrid, Passive, Ethical) and Portfolio Objectives (Income, Balanced & Capital Growth) to choose from. These portfolios can be held in either a GIA, ISA, or Pension (both accumulation and decumulation).
- Clients – where advisers can view and add clients.
- Proposals – where advisers can view existing and create new proposals.
- Reports – where advisers can view existing and create new reports.
- Messages – where messages sent and received between adviser and client can be viewed.
- Settings – where firms can update/set; company details, users, adviser details, review schedule dates, document settings and client agreement settings etc.
A typical user journey starts by adding a new client and their personal, tax and bank details (needed for submitting business later in the process). DIGI will automatically ask the user if they would like to invite the newly added client to the Client Portal.
DIGI has been built with the goal of helping firms keep on top of on-going work and will alert users when client reviews are coming up. During onboarding firms can set up different service levels that will be assigned to their clients. Depending on the service level assigned to a client the system will alert the firm of when their review is due removing the need for constant monitoring. Advisers can produce a review pack from within the system by simply selecting a date range in which they want the report and documentation to cover (for example last 12 months). DIGI will then create a set of review documents with the relevant information (including and not limited to performances, transaction history and asset breakdown) that can subsequently be shared with the client via the document store or messaging facility in the portal.
Whilst DIGI users can run a series of MI reports, to understand their client base, one thing we were unsure of was the ability to run a firm level CGT report rather than for an individual client. As part of any advice process Capital Gains Tax is hugely significant and even more so when recommending and reviewing investment portfolios. This would not be a huge fix as the functionality is already there, but one we feel would make a significant difference for the firm using the tool. Digital Wealth Systems charge a single fee, payable by the client, for all their services. For the DFM Service (provided by P1 investments), Tax Wrappers and Technology provided the charge is 0.35% (of assets under management). In addition, P1 Portfolio fees range from 0.08% to 0.82% (for the ethical portfolio). DIGI was built as an end-to-end platform with the objective of helping adviser firms recommend, process and review clients in a cost and time efficient manner.
Although still in its infancy having only been launched in November 2020 the system has a lot to offer adviser firms looking to keep their operating costs and time down when providing recommendations and reviews to their clients. With a few bits of added functionality and an increased list of software integrations and investment providers becoming available (again, something the Origo Integration Hub could help DIGI provide), there is no reason why this system may have much to offer adviser firms. In the meantime, if you are using P1 for your model portfolios there are obvious advantages to using it.
What I particularly liked
- Designed to be simple and easy to use by both adviser firms and clients alike.
- The modern user interface and experience.
- Straight through processing for P1 portfolios.
Scope for improvement
- Unfortunately, you are currently unable to add and process joint client cases.
- Integrations with risk profiling tools, so that clients can complete questionnaires from within the portal during the onboarding process.
- Advisers are currently able to run a series of MI reports including CGT reports at firm level however, this CGT report cannot be run at an individual client level. Something that would be hugely beneficial to an adviser firm.
- Ability to amend and finalise reports from within the system, before they are sent to a client.