There are three CF30 advisers at Mark Dean Wealth Management. Our approximate assets under management are £45million. We offer our clients, of which we currently have 38: no initial charges; only 0.5% ongoing charge; we are independent and directly authorised; and we are members of the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) and Federation of European Independent Financial Advisers (FEIFA). We use Tenet Select for our compliance support.
We specialise in international financial planning. My immediate background, before I set the firm up in 2010, was Senior International Wealth Manager at HSBC International for five years. Before that, I was at Citibank, part of Citigroup, helping to establish an international financial advisory business for their Citigold clients
Starting out in financial services
I first started out in financial services at Sun Life of Canada. I didn’t choose the industry, being very honest, I kind of fell into it, as I needed a job where I could work my own hours and not be committed to nine-to-five. As time went on, I found my sales figures were consistently good and despite some ups and downs I’ve stuck doing what I know best and here we are 35 years later.
The biggest lesson I have learnt during my time in the industry – I would say, the quicker you can adapt to change, the more successful you will be. If you always look after your clients as if they were your own mother, then longer term your clients will look after you.
‘Dynamic Planner’s been a godsend’
We first began using Dynamic Planner in the summer of 2019 and it’s been a godsend. If I had to use one word to describe why we went with Dynamic Planner it would be ‘control’. It gives us, as a firm, much greater control over asset allocation and fund choice when we build model portfolios. It gives us a great structure to how we work.
We haven’t had the opportunity to do this before, but now using Dynamic Planner we can write a risk profiling report for clients, which is very good quality – and, using Elements and the Client Review, we have prepared annual review reports with bespoke front pages. That helps us demonstrate value as a firm and helps formalise all of our documentation, so everything is white labelled with our firm’s logo, for continuity. Also, that is what our clients trust.
‘Something to hang your hat on’
We have started putting clients through Dynamic Planner’s Risk Profiling process – and we are also getting all existing clients to complete the questionnaires to update their profiles as well. It works well. Yes, it’s longer than others, but I think it needs to be, in this day and age. I don’t think as a firm you can get away with a straight, one-page risk profile questionnaire today.
Dynamic Planner is good because it assesses also a client’s investor experience and their capacity for loss, so it gives you something to hang your hat on, so to speak, for the regulator.
‘Biggest selling point’
We love the support you get from the Client Success team at Dynamic Planner – they are great. You can call up; they don’t try and get you off the phone; they login and share the screen; and they stay on the line with you, right until the end to ensure you have resolved your issue. It’s really, really good. For me, this is Dynamic Planner’s biggest selling point.
We were also able – myself and a colleague – to arrange a conference call with Abhi Chatterjee, who heads up the Asset and Risk Modelling team, to explain more about Dynamic Planner’s asset allocation when we had questions.
Would I recommend Dynamic Planner to another firm? Absolutely. In this day and age, with regulation, I don’t think you can run your business without it.