Andrew Peters is a director and adviser at Deep Blue.
How long have you been using IBOSS?
We were one of the very early adopters in 2009; indeed, I put some of my own money with IBOSS at that time and remain an investor to this day.
We tested IBOSS for over a year, carrying out rigorous due diligence before rolling the proposition out to our clients in the later part of 2009 and early 2010.
What services do you use?
We use the Portfolio Management Service.
We’ve long believed that investment management is a specialist area and as financial advisers, we shouldn’t be picking funds. The white labelled nature of the IBOSS proposition gives us the best of both worlds; an investment proposition in our name but using the expertise and skill of Chris and his team.
Naturally, we make it clear to clients that the investment proposition is white labelled. However, they understand why we outsource the management of money in the way we do and are very happy with the service they receive.
Are you using IBOSS as part of a formalised Centralised Investment Proposition?
Yes. In fact, it is our Centralised Investment Proposition.
We feel the regular contact with clients is essential to an advisers’ CIP.
How did you first find out about IBOSS?
By attending a Paradigm seminar. This was followed by a lengthy period of due diligence before we formally agreed to adopt the IBOSS proposition.
Over the years we’ve developed a close relationship with IBOSS, meeting Chris and members of his team at least quarterly. These interactions with the key decision makers are vital to helping us understand the ethos behind IBOSS.
What were the important factors when you were looking for an investment partner?
Post RDR we needed the ability to review our clients regularly and efficiently. The Portfolio Management Service means that we can keep every single one of our client’s investments regularly under review.
To put it another way, irrespective of how many face-to-face meetings we have with clients, they know that every 90 days their investments have been reviewed. Plus, we receive affirmation they are still happy with the service, while they can raise anything they wish to discuss.
We know our clients are happy too; the vast majority take the required action each quarter, while a small number may ask questions.
How have your clients reacted?
We know clients value the reassurance of quarterly updates. However, to be truthful they never mention it, which in many respects shows it’s doing what it was designed to do.
The quarterly updates mean that at review meetings we don’t need to discuss investments in the detail we would if we weren’t using IBOSS. This allows us to focus on the client’s needs and financial planning. We also spend time ensuring that we have correctly matched their attitude to risk and goals to the IBOSS portfolio. Once that’s done we hand over to IBOSS; we don’t influence the investment choices.
Is it possible to identify the single largest benefit to you or your clients in your relationship with IBOSS?
For us, it’s the ongoing compliance with RDR and the ability to demonstrate the value we are adding for the fees being charged.
For clients, it’s the reassurance that their investments are being kept under regular review.