Be honest. How old is the financial services software you use to manage your clients and run your financial services firm: 7 years? 10 years? 15 years? How about its functionality? Old, clunky, and boring? If it’s 7-15 years old, we have news for you: It’s more likely than not all those things. And guess what? Not only is that clunky software probably costing you more than you think in time and money because it’s so inefficient – your clients have probably noticed, too.

No matter what industry you’re in, consumers expect their service providers to be current when it comes to technology – or at least current enough that their customer experience is smooth and their payments and information are secure.

As a financial services provider, that expectation is even greater because you’re managing a lot of sensitive personal financial data. In fact, with so many data breaches and phishing scams these days, outdated tech can actually raise a red flag for current and potential clients.

Sure, updating your software can be a big expense and a huge undertaking. So how do you know when it’s the right time – or if it’s even necessary? These five signs your financial services software needs a technology reboot will help you determine if your time has finally come.

Your clients have to call or email you for information

Yes, clients should be asking you for guidance and advice on major changes. But they should also be able to see and manage their accounts by logging in to a personal dashboard provided by your firm. Your client portal should be easy to use and should provide them with a wealth of information that allows them to take as much control as they’d like. This is something your competitors are providing. Are you keeping up with the industry expectation or is it normal for clients to call when they needs things like reports, numbers or updates on their accounts?

Your client portal is hard to navigate

User experience/user interaction (UX/UI) has come a long way in the past 10 years! Users expect websites to be user friendly and easy to navigate. Beyond just being user friendly, consumers expect dashboards and visuals with the most important information and reports at their fingertips. Gone are the days of paper portfolios. Everything your client needs should live in their portal and be easy to access.

Does your client portal deliver that, or is it out of date, terribly designed, and incredibly hard to use? If you answered yes to any of those things, it’s time to upgrade.

You have to manually enter data into your software

Automation is a beautiful thing. If you and your staff still have to manually enter information into your software for clients and advisors to use, it’s time for an upgrade. Spending hours manipulating and posting data is never a good use of time. Wouldn’t it be amazing if that could just be automated? It can.

Using APIs and the latest technology, it’s possible to connect feeds of data from multiple sources (such as broker dealers and management advisors), combine it with other data, and automatically upload information that is ready for consumption – with minimal human intervention.

Automating this process not only saves time, it will remove the element of human error and increase the speed of data to market.

Your reports are complicated

Not only do you need to make data and information accessible, it needs to be easy to read and understand. All the information in the world is useless if your clients don’t understand it. How are you presenting data to your clients: in an extremely long PDF that has to be downloaded, or in reports designed with the client in mind? Fancy visuals and charts are a must – or, at the very least, clean, easy-to-read charts!

This is another instance where dashboard technology can come in handy. Can your clients view their data in multiple ways? Does your client portal include explanations, terminology, and resources to help them understand? If the answer is “No,” then it’s time for a redesign.

Your competitors have better technology than you

Clients have a certain level of expectation when it comes to financial services. If you aren’t keeping up with competitors and industry standards, you’re falling behind. Don’t be a dinosaur; be a disruptor. You want to wow clients and get them excited about working with you, not bore them to death and frustrate them with old technology. Image and product offerings are important – and product offerings can often influence image. When your technology reflects poorly on you and offers little value, it’s time to rethink and rehaul that software.

RTS Labs has worked with several financial services firms to help refresh their technology – both on the back end and on the client-facing side. Our team of experts can take your old, outdated client portals and turn them into something clients will be excited about. By redesigning and rebuilding on a modern platform, we can bring you into (or past) the current century and give your users distinct, easy-to-use portals.

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