PractiFI wins inaugural Salesforce PitchComp

Last week, Salesforce held the Sydney leg of their World Tour, which included their inaugural Salesforce PitchComp. PractiFI was one of three cloud based startups chosen to pitch and we are extremely proud to announce that despite the seriously stiff competition, we emerged as the victors!

Our Chief Executive Officer, Glenn Elliott, took to the stage to speak about how PractiFI puts the customer at the heart of financial services businesses. The intense competition was judged by three of the country’s most influential technology identities: Steve Baxter (investor and entrepreneur, also of Shark Tank fame), Pip Marlow (CEO, Strategic Innovation at Suncorp, and former MD of Microsoft Australia) and Annie Parker (CEO of Lighthouse Sydney and co-founder of Telstra’s startup accelerator muru-D).

As we have come to expect from his appearances on Shark Tank, Baxter came out swinging with hard hitting questions. From blatantly asking why we were there, to understanding how regulatory changes affect our product, Baxter made sure no stone was left unturned.

However, he and the other judges were impressed by the amount of traction that we’ve had, the testimonials from our clients and of course our numbers (that clearly reflect our rapid growth).


 

Both Glenn and Adrian spoke to Dynamic Business about the PitchComp and what they had gained from the experience. Glenn said “The important lesson for us was to make sure people are clear on the problem we are solving and what it is we are, considering we’re a sophisticated application, not just a simple one point solution.”

We are hugely honoured to have won this award and would like to thank our fellow competitors, the judges and Salesforce for everything that went into making the event such a huge success.

See what Salesforce had to say about our win here.

PractiFI’s AMP Edition brings profitability to the centre of the business management conversation

Today’s financial planning businesses are increasingly aware of the need to closely manage upfront and ongoing revenue. Pressure on traditional revenue streams, competition from digital advice offerings and regulatory controls like FDS have combined to highlight the critical nature of revenue data.

Until now, this data has been limited in use. However, with the revenue module in PractiFI’s upcoming AMP Edition, businesses can now track and analyse revenue across existing clients and sales pipelines. This new feature extends an already powerful tool to identify trends in adviser sales, highlighting cross-sell potential within the existing client list.

PractiFI CEO Glenn Elliott says “We developed this feature based on feedback from our AMP clients. They needed an easy way to import and analyse revenue but we wanted to extend the value into driving sales and profitability.”

Elliott adds “With usability and configurability fundamental parts of our design process, we implemented a straightforward way for AMP businesses to utilise their existing commission file format, bringing much needed transparency over their client base and uncovers additional opportunities.”

A new real time analytics engine allows powerful reporting and insights, including breakdowns of revenue by client, segment, adviser and service. Drill throughs and metrics are completely customisable to those that matter for an individual business. The tool also delivers a highly sought after expected versus actual revenue tracking capability that dramatically reduces the time spent reconciling commission statements.

David Stephen, Managing Director of Invest Blue, an AMP advice business says “PractiFI’s revenue management capability saves us time and effort, but more importantly allows us to get a complete understanding of our client base and their relative value to the business, which assists us in determining profitability on a client level and in designing our pricing policies at a business level. This is exactly the type of feature advice businesses need to power their growth.”

PractiFI’s AMP Edition is due for release in April this year.

PractiFI and SMS-Magic deliver integrated SMS in financial advice and superannuation

MEDIA RELEASE

PractiFI, one of Australia’s leading financial services technology platforms, today announced an integration with SMS-Magic, which will enable PractiFi clients to communicate with their customers via SMS. With the immediate availability of this integration, PractiFI users can send text messages directly from a client record.

“Partnering with SMS-Magic delivers on our commitment to connect financial planning firms and superannuation funds with their clients and members in an omnichannel model,” said Glenn Elliott, CEO, PractiFI.

PractiFI and Riva deliver powerful CRM integration for financial services

MEDIA RELEASE

PractiFI, a customer engagement platform for financial services, and Riva CRM Integration, a global technology leader in CRM and email integration trusted by 15 of the world’s largest banks, today announced a strategic partnership to benefit financial services businesses. This powerful partnership allows PractiFI and Riva to deliver operating efficiencies and compliant audit trails like never before.

“With email and calendar being fundamental business tools, we’re excited to add Riva to our expanding ecosystem, delivering genuine efficiency to financial advice, superannuation and insurance businesses,” explained Glenn Elliott, CEO of PractiFI.

“We are delighted to partner with PractiFI to bring Riva’s seamless, reliable integration to PractiFI’s powerful customer engagement platform,” said Peter Charnock, Riva General Manager for Asia Pacific.

PractiFI Alsace Release

It’s time for another wine! PractiFI Alsace fills your glass with a crisp set of new features and enhancements. As always, feel free to get in touch if you would like more details on anything contained in this release.

PractiFI Alsace Release

Enhancements
  • Riva Integration:  The Riva integration has been extended so you can now synchronise your calendar appointments with PractiFI. Calendar meetings with clients will be viewable under the Interactions tab. Note: You must have a Riva license to use this integration.
  • SMS Magic Integration:  Send an ad hoc SMS directly from a client record. Messages are sent from and recorded in Interactions. Note: You must have an SMS Magic subscription to use this integration. Contact us for up to date pricing for PractiFI clients. 
  • Service and Client selector for Bulk Transactions: Easily build a list of Clients/Services when creating bulk tasks, bulk interactions and bulk processes. In a superannuation context, a filter in the Client table allows application to Employers and Providers as well.
  • New Client Entity View: Client entities such as a company, trust or SMSF within a Household now have their own Client Entity View, enabling you to create relationships between them (e.g. a corporate trustee of an SMSF). They are also now included in the Global Search function making it easier to find them. Client Entities are represented by a Hollow Heart icon making it easy to distinguish from Client records. A new field for SMSFs allows a record of whether it has a corporate trustee or personal trustees.
  • Cashflow in BatchView: Cashflows have been added as a tile in Batch, with a click-through to an Income & Expenses table to allow easy tracking of Income and Expense records added or amended via a batch.
  • Multi-Division enhancements: Added telephone and address to Division Info tab and made it easier to manage parent/child division relationships in PractiFI rather than Salesforce.
  • Total Annual Premium formula change: Amended the formula for the calculation of Total Annual Premiums for insurance policies (based on client feedback). The policy fee will now use the same frequency as the premium frequency, instead of being treated as a one-off fee. Note: You should review any records that may be affected.
  • Description for Cashflows: Added a Description field to Income and Expense records.
  • Person list in PracticeView: Added a Person Stage column and filter to PracticeView. They can now be amended/deleted using the Mass Update function. Hyperlinks have also been removed from Mobile, Phone and Email and Social fields.
  • Display of History tab: You can now control whether the History tab displays on various views via a Salesforce setting. Affected areas are Interactions, Processes & Tasks, Portfolio Holdings, Insurance, Cashflows, ClientView, ServiceView, ProviderView and PersonView.
  • Interactions can be linked: In a superannuation context, Member Interactions can be linked to an Employer interaction. A common scenario would be attendance by a member to a seminar held in relation to an employer.
  • Team PractiFI link: Clicking on Team PractiFI from the Admin menu will now take you directly to the PractiFI Success Portal (previously, it composed an email).
Fixes
  • Resolved an issue with conditional rendering of the Instalment tab so it will display if there are instalments records, even if they are not enabled in Service Type settings, i.e. instalments have been added by a data feed.
  • Amended the Overdue Task filter to exclude tasks due today.
  • Fixed issues where hyperlinks between pages were not working.
  • Fixed an error that was occurring when saving primary contact on client people.
  • Fixed minor UI issues.
  • Fixed an issue with the Client Segment filter in ClientView.
  • Fixed some Audit Setting issues where they were not flowing through to Salesforce Track History as expected.
  • Amended the Person picklist in Portfolio Holdings to only list people that are part of the Household client. In a superannuation context, the Person picklist for Seminar Interactions related to Employers was also updated.
  • Fixed issues around Primary Division on User which were causing errors.
  • Fixed an issue where the Priority of a Process Step was not mapping to the related task.
  • Fixed display issues with dates in the Insurance tab.

PractiFI Spa Experience is coming

Every now and then we can all benefit from a refresh. A detox, a clean out and a thorough rejuvenation to turn us into a better version of ourselves.

PractiFI is no different, which is why we’ve refreshed its user interface from the ground up. The result is the PractiFI Spa Experience, and as a PractiFI user, you’re invited.

If you’re picturing a yoga retreat with daily massages and body scrubs, I’m afraid you’re off the mark. This spa experience is here to work: harder, faster and better than ever before.

 

Client | Glance

Client | Basics | Edit

Division | Basics

The Spa Experience is PractiFI’s brand new user experience (or “UX”, in techie shorthand) and I’m seriously excited about it. We designed our existing UX back in 2013 and it’s served us beautifully and effectively since then. But the world of web technology moves at breakneck speed and in the intervening few years, new techniques have emerged around the concept of a Single Page Application (hence the “Spa Experience”) that we’re now exploiting heavily.

Plus, as we’ve evolved, we’ve received tremendous feedback from you, our clients who use PractiFI every day. You told us that you wanted more configurability, richer functionality on a tablet and super high performance. We’ve really heard you, and we want the same things.

The Spa Experience is a completely new UX that’s more elegant, more powerful and much, much faster. And it’s coming very soon. To help you understand what it’s all about, talk to your engagement manager, or check out the Spa Experience FAQ below.

What are the main benefits of the PractiFI Spa Experience?

  • Performance performance performance: The Spa Experience brings a step change in performance; it’s the #1 reason we created the Spa. Every load of a new record – a client, an employer, a fund member, a business division or a team member – is much faster. Once you’re on that record, navigating to the tabs within it – say to view all tasks for a team member or all assets for an advice client – is also way quicker.
  • It runs on more devices: The Spa Experience is intended for tablets, laptops and desktops, giving you a common user experience at your desk, in a cafe or at the airport. Salesforce1 Mobile remains our recommended solution for using PractiFI on your smartphone, but the Spa Experience will now cover all your other devices.
  • It’s more configurable: PractiFI has had a huge amount of configurability built in for some time now. But the Spa Experience takes configurability even further. Configure any page to your specification, even Basics. Create as many custom tabs as you like, and remove standard tabs. Rename and reorder side navigation tabs. Configure custom menu items that click through to predefined list views or that create records with preset field values.

What else do I get in the Spa Experience?

  • Unique URLs for every page: every page now gets its own URL, so you can send notifications that link to a specific task, or policy, or asset, or anything.
  • Broader search results: you can now use search to quickly find and navigate to just about any detail record: tasks, interactions, policies, member accounts and more.
  • Better theming: we’ve made it easier to customise the colour scheme in PractiFI. Plus we’ve made it easy to set custom colours to differentiate between different client stages, segments, service types, task stages and many other categories.

Is it going to be a big change for our team who use PractiFI every day?

Not really. The basics remain the same as today. The PractiFI top nav bar, side nav bar, Launcher menu and Settings menu that you’re used to are present in the Spa Experience. A few subtabs in certain pages have been moved into the side nav bar, but not many. The biggest change is that some sidebar content, such as sidebar notes and client contact details, have moved to the new context header section. But we’re sure you’ll get the hang of these minor changes quickly.

Will our existing PractiFI custom configuration still work in the Spa Experience?

Yes, but some configurations may need adjustment to work well in the Spa Experience. We’ll provide guidance on how to make those adjustments and will advise through PractiFI Success as always.

Will our existing PractiFI integrations still work in the Spa Experience?

Any data integrations (that is, that communicate to PractiFI through the Salesforce APIs) will be unaffected by the Spa Experience, being as it is simply a user experience change. Integrations that link to existing PractiFI URLs or to existing PractiFI page structure (e.g. screen scrapers) may need adjustment. We’ll provide guidance on how to make those adjustments and will advise through PractiFI Success as always.

I’m a system administrator. Will I have to relearn how to configure PractiFI?

Not at all. You’ll just have more power at your fingertips. PractiFI Spa Experience is still built using Skuid, and I know many of our system administrator users have started to do some amazing things using Skuid to do custom configurations of PractiFI. You’ll be able to use that knowledge to configure the Spa Experience to do more than ever before.

When is the Spa Experience coming?

We’re aiming to make the Spa Experience available as an optional feature in our April 2017 release. Your system administrator will be able to enable Spa selectively across your organisation at their discretion.

Can I stay on the old PractiFI Classic Experience

For a period of time, yes. But the Spa is better in every way, so you won’t want to stay classic for long. We won’t rush you, but once we make the Spa Experience available, we’ll cease development of the Classic Experience, pushing new features only into the Spa. We’re aiming to have all clients transitioned to the Spa during 2017.

 

The Spa Experience is a huge step forward for PractiFI and I’m tremendously proud of what my team has created. I’m sure you’ll have questions about it, so please talk to your PractiFI engagement manager or get in touch.

NGS Super Chooses PractiFI for Competitive Advantage

As reported in Financial Standard and ifa, NGS Super, who provides superannuation and financial advice to more than 100,000 clients, has partnered with PractiFI as part of a major operating technology transformation.

PractiFI co-founder Adrian Johnstone said “We’re very pleased to be partnering with NGS Super as they undergo technology led transformation”.

“PractiFI enables us to see a single view of our employer and member records, understand their changing situation, and respond so much more effectively to their needs,” NGS Super chief executive Anthony Rodwell-Ball said. “With the entire superannuation industry focused on member and employer experience, we’re excited to see our dedicated superannuation functionality driving competitive advantage.”

 

PractiFI Cabernet Release

We have good news! PractiFI Cabernet has been deployed and as usual, brings with it a host of new features and enhancements. As always, feel free to get in touch if you would like more information.

PractiFI Cabernet Release

Enhancements
  • Riva Integration: Maintain an up to date view of email communication with your clients.  You can now synchronise your emails with PractiFI. Incoming and outgoing emails with clients will be viewable under the Interactions tab. Note: You must have a Riva license to use this integration.
  • Workflow Task Automation: A new automation engine that can trigger different types of actions on completion of a task. Actions are a new function that can be defined on Process Steps / Tasks when the Task is completed, and optionally, where the Task is completed with a given Outcome. Types of Actions available:
    • Kick off a Task (based on a Process Step template)
    • Launch a Process (based a Process Type template)
    • Update the stage of the Task’s parent Process
    • Update the stage of the Task’s parent Service
    • Update the stage of the Task’s parent Client.
  • Extension of Superannuation features: Primarily aimed at the Superannuation Administration industry, PractiFI has been extended to cater for a range of new entities, organisation types and relationships.
    • New Organisation Type for Employers
    • New Service Types for Sub-Funds and Member Accounts
    • New Person Types for Members
    • Stage and Segment available for Person entities
    • Member Account search from the Launcher menu
    • Employer search from the Launcher menu
    • Conditional rendering of various pages dependent on Superannuation being enabled.
  • Benefit level premiums: New functionality to record premiums at benefit level for bundled insurance (different insurance types bundled under a single policy). i.e. bundled Life, Trauma and TPD insurance can have separate premium amounts recorded, which will add to the annual Policy Fee, and sum to the overall policy premium.
  • At a Glance is the default landing page: Upon login users are now directed to the At a Glance page by default.
  • New Relationship validation rule: When adding or modifying a Relationship, the From and To fields are now mandatory.
  • Extended Bulk Create Tasks functionality: Bulk Tasks now have more attributes that can be associated with a Task Group; be based on a pre-defined Task Template; and/or  Task Outcomes.
  • Completed Tasks change: The Completed Tasks tile on At a Glance now queries Group Code rather than Code on stage which provides more flexibility.
  • Mass update available for processes: Previously the only mass update function for processes was to flag rows for deletion. You can now also update Process Type, Stage, Due Date and / or Owner for multiple processes in one go using the Mass Update function.
  • Enable Suppress At Launch setting: “Suppress at Launch” was previously a hidden Process Step setting to hide a particular Process Step on launch of a Process.
  • Display group with outcomes: The name of the outcome category group has been appended in Task Templates & Process steps.
  • OmniLife version update: Integration with Insurance quoting tool – OmniLife updated to latest available version.
  • Age filter picklist method amended: In the people tab, the Age filter has been changed from a picklist to allow entry of any age.
  • Custom tab for Interaction page: Added the ability to include a Custom tab on the Interaction page to allow for Custom fields.
  • Display Owner of Instalments: Added Owner field to Add Instalment and Edit Instalment to enable revenue instalments to be assigned to a specific Owner.
  • Reviewed and adjusted number of table rows displayed: For the majority of tables, the number of rows shown by default have been increased.
  • New Mailing Address field on the Account Object: A new field has been added to the Address object to coalesce existing address fields – uses the postal address, unless blank in which case it will use location address. The new field does not appear on screen however can be used for mailing/Conga etc.
  • Prevent Editing of PractiFI core Skuid pages: New security measure to prevent key PractiFI pages from being accidentally overwritten by edits. Pages should first be cloned if you want to make your own changes.
  • Denormalise Primary Division onto User: Team Members (i.e. users) can be members of multiple Divisions (e.g. practices), with one of those relationships denoted as primary. Denormalising the related division onto the user object enables additional functionality for analytics and other model conditions.
  • Chatter is now selective: Chatter now detects if the feed is enabled on an object and prevents posting if not. Feed is still displayed as read only, and comments can be made.
  • Additional Skuid page details: The Skuid pages for additional pages were added to PractiFI Settings.
Fixes
  • Resolved an issue where resetting a Task due date to the future would still show as overdue.
  • Amended the default sort order for the At a Glance Client Birthday tile/People list table to earliest day/month first.
  • Amended Income and Expenses so they now net off correctly.
  • Fixed an error with Process Step due dates so the number of days correctly takes into account weekdays only.
  • Fixed minor validation/warning messaging
  • Fixed an issue where only a single Person could be added to a Provider.
  • Fixed an issue where the Client People relationships to other parties were not displaying correctly.
  • Fixed minor UI issues.
  • Fixed an error in Group View where the number of members displayed was not correct if a queue had more than 20 members.
  • Fixed an issue in the Service popup where changing the default service name would revert to the default on save.
  • Fixed minor table filtering issues
  • Fixed an error on creation of a Household Client where Team Member was not mandatory.
  • Fixed an error on creation of a new business client where cancelling, then continuing would cause the Next button to disable.
  • Fixed an issue where the Task list in Service View was not showing related interactions.
  • Fixed an issue with a Group Insurance policy calculation that was referring to a deprecated field.

PractiFI Demo: Campaign Monitor Integration

Marketing to your clients and communicating with them on a regular basis is vital, no matter what type of business you operate. In the financial services space, it doesn’t matter whether you’re in superannuation, financial advice or insurance – good marketing and communication can help you win more business and ensure customer satisfaction.

Creating, sending and monitoring any outreach activity can be difficult, particularly when you are dealing with large numbers of clients. PractiFI’s Pinot Noir release introduced Campaign Monitor integration, which allows you to create campaigns and maintain visibility over them at a client interaction level.

Take a look at how this integration could transform your marketing and communication activity.

PractiFI Demo: Praemium Integration

Maintaining visibility over your clients’ investments can be a challenge. As an adviser, it’s important to be able to gain fast and accurate access to your clients’ portfolios so you can keep them informed, provide them with advice and answer any queries about their investment position. This is where portfolio administration platforms can assist.

V-Wrap is Praemium’s portfolio administration system, known for its ability to manage client investments in a single account. PractiFI Pinot Noir brings the ability to add a Praemium V-Wrap account to the Assets tab in Client View. It gives you quick access to a client’s full V-Wrap portfolio at the click of a button.

Take a look at how easy it is to gain a deeper look into a client’s V-Wrap portfolio from PractiFI.