SunGard has enhanced the financial planning capabilities of its WealthStation wealth management platform to help firms attract, service and grow client relationships.
New capabilities of WealthStation Financial Planning include a cash flow-based approach to retirement planning, new online self-service client tools, and new financial planning capabilities for Canadian firms.
The current financial crisis is causing anxiety for many investors as the value of retirement funds decline, especially for those who are nearing or in their retirement years.
WealthStation's new retirement planning, client self-service and Canadian financial planning capabilities help advisors guide clients through economic uncertainty and assess their needs throughout different periods, from wealth accumulation to retirement income and distribution, to planning for the unexpected.
Blaine Maxfield, chief operating officer of SunGard's wealth management business, said, "With investment options becoming more complex and market conditions in a state of flux, individual investors are increasingly turning to their advisors for professional guidance and access to diversified investment offerings. WealthStation helps advisors gain a holistic view of clients and households, maximize productivity and face time with clients, deepen client relationships and effectively guide clients through life events."
As phased retirement plans become more popular and offer advantages for employers and retirees, especially during difficult economic times, advisors need to help their clients manage income and spending options at different periods of retirement. WealthStation's retirement planning module has been redesigned to provide a cash flow planning approach that helps clients use assets on an as-needed basis and supports deferred taxation on qualified plans. It helps an advisor's clients take advantage of more specific, multiple retirement goals using multi-phased assumptions on objectives, returns and taxes, including factors such as part-time income.
Many advisors are looking to provide their clients with more sophisticated planning capabilities online in order to attract more clients, add value to existing client offerings and strengthen advisor-client relationships. WealthStation's online client access capabilities have been expanded with additional planning modules that advisors can provide their clients via the Web. This helps give advisors a continuum for inviting clients to access and perform analyses on their own, and subsequently reviewing and fine-tuning the analysis for the client at a later date.
Defined pension plans are becoming more valuable to investors as investments fluctuate during volatile economic times. WealthStation's Financial Planning for Canada module has been enhanced with new tools for critical illness, pension plan analysis and disability income protection for Canadian investors. WealthStation calculates the present value of current and ongoing expenses related to critical illnesses, and analyzes available resources and income needs. It also provides a pension plan calculator that helps advisors illustrate the expected economic value of each payment option available in many Canadian pension plans.
Developed using SunGard's Common Services Architecture (CSA)*, WealthStation can be deployed to support a single process such as financial planning or as an end-to-end solution. WealthStation's modules include client management, financial planning, investment management, asset allocation, data aggregation, trading and rebalancing, reporting, client access and compliance.
* SunGard Financial Systems is pursuing a visionary initiative to transform some of the key functionality of its core systems into components to form a new software development and on-demand delivery environment called Infinity. Infinity enables financial institutions to develop and deploy custom applications, integrating SunGard components with their own proprietary or third party components. Infinity uses SunGard's Common Services Architecture (CSA), a service-oriented architecture (SOA) development framework, offering business process management (BPM) and a virtualized, software-as-a-service (SaaS) infrastructure.