Assante is a Canadian wealth management firm founded in 1995. Boasting multiple locations spread across the country, the company is supported by a team of over 800 professional advisors that manage over $40 billion for individuals and families nationwide. Assante is a security-minded firm with a knack for savvy risk management, helping Canadians grow their wealth and facilitate a comfortable, secure future.
With several offices operating across Ontario, moving paperwork across branches is an everyday challenge for this bustling firm.
For Trina Odd in particular, a financial advisor that oversees 5 different advisory teams across the province of Ontario, her signature is required to validate between 20 and 30 documents every single week. This includes everything from fee-based agreements to “know your client” forms and account-opening paperwork – not to mention everyone else who needs to sign on the dotted line before the document even makes it to her desk. These documents are the backbone of Assante’s growth and prosperity, helping them lock in new clients, determine commission structures, and move money around safely and securely.
"A lot of our paperwork needs to be signed by 2 of the senior advisors, then it needs to go to a branch manager like myself – but we're all in different locations on different days," said Odd. And if that wasn't challenging enough already, stringent guidelines set forth by the Ontario Securities Commission and other governing bodies require these types of documents to be signed within 48 hours.
What happens when that 2-day window expires? Everything grinds to a screeching halt. Assante's head office freezes the client's account, and no trades can be conducted until the paperwork is returned with all three signatures. In a world where clients are relying on their investment advisor to meticulously monitor and manage their account, that simply won't do.
By making the switch to eSignatures, a number of Assante advisory teams have given themselves the gift of time and money – arguably the two most coveted resources in the world of business. Not only have they slashed their expenditures on paper and toner, but document turnaround times have never been quicker, leading to fewer account restrictions and a smoother client on-boarding process overall. Put simply, according to Odd, "It's convenient. It's easy. It's fast."
Before Signeasy, client on-boarding documents would have to be faxed to the administrator, who would then print off a hard copy for everyone to sign. This process required a ton of running around to meet the OSC’s strict 48-hour deadline, wasting precious admin time and putting new accounts at risk of being frozen.
Now, the document is scanned directly into Signeasy, where it can be easily accessed and electronically signed by all parties involved. It is also immediately available to the head office upon completion. The result: effective risk management, fewer account freezes, and many more happy customers.
Collecting manual signatures from multiple parties goes hand-in-hand with wasted admin time. With signers located in different cities on completely different schedules, adopting a digital document workflow changed the game for Odd and her teams: now, they can sign from wherever, whenever, without the admin staff sending out a single nagging message or phone call.
Assante is all about growing their clients' wealth – but it was time they started looking after their own pocketbook as well! “It’s saving us hugely on paper,” said Odd: simply adopting e-signatures helped her team save a whole lot of money on stacks upon stacks of printer paper, not to mention costly ink and toner.
The need to sign documents within a 48-hour time frame required a solution that could ramp up efficiency and reduce document turnaround times.