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  • by Janelle Ward
  • Sr Manager, Strategic Relationships, TD Ameritrade Institutional

Getting the Most From Workflows

The majority of advisory firms (65%) use documented workflow processes to make client service more consistent, streamline operations, achieve scale, offer new services, and improve their digital presence. These are just some of the benefits firms seek, according to the TD Ameritrade Institutional 2016 RIA Tech Study of more than 1,200 personnel serving as advisors, working in operations, and providing back office support.

Here are two guidelines to help advisors make the most of workflows:

1. Invite those involved in a process to have a say in the workflow design

2. Take an iterative approach—start with core steps and add to the
process only as needed

While I understand advisors’ hesitancy to document workflows, even a firm with few employees can benefit. Workflows provide continuity in case something happens to the advisor or a key staff member. And during a sale, buyers want to see standardized processes. Documented workflows can also be advantageous for advisors looking to sell their firms.


1 TD Ameritrade Institutional 2016 RIA Tech Study. TD Ameritrade Institutional, July 2016.

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