When Commonwealth Financial Network of Waltham, MA, the nation’s third-largest privately-held broker-dealer, decided to adopt a standardized document management system for its 1,000 financial planners from coast-to-coast, it put its reputation as a technology leader on the line.
But after a 12 month review of 32 software packages, Michael Sundberg, Commonwealth’s Due Diligence Officer, recommended Laserfiche to CIO Ed Bell, and the solution has been working well ever since.
Laserfiche Winners Circle VAR Duplitron of Brockton, MA, invited Commonwealth to a seminar in suburban Boston eighteen months ago. Duplitron director Steve Woolner and his team impressed Sundberg immediately. After certifying Laserfiche as compliant with SEC regulations, and reviewing Duplitron’s credentials as an outstanding solution provider, Sundberg agreed that Laserfiche and Duplitron were the right team for Commonwealth.
“My responsibilities include overseeing Commonwealth’s Help Desk, so I know what products are well received in our offices from Maine to Hawaii,” Sundberg says. “Laserfiche was rated by consultant Gartner Group as the kind of product we wanted, and once we saw a demonstration and studied its cost-effectiveness, we decided the fit was right for us.”
Laserfiche enables investment professionals to scan, store and retrieve client records electronically, speeding customer service while remaining compliant with SEC and FDIC records management requirements. Using Laserfiche, financial planners can eliminate expensive filing cabinets and end frustrating searches for missing paper.
“Laserfiche enables our financial planners to communicate with the home office electronically and access client statements, confirmations and other critical paperwork on the Web,” Sundberg says. “This gives the planners more time to actually run their businesses and take care of customers, instead of handling clerical duties.”
Sundberg says Commonwealth advisers appreciate Laserfiche’s ease of use and its non-proprietary file formats, as well as its ability to work with standard scanners and PCs. He adds that competitors’ products required users to buy specialized equipment and save files in formats that might not be accessible in the future. He was also impressed with Duplitron’s plan for implementing the system.
“Ed Bell and Mike Sundberg are sophisticated IT professionals who wanted assurances that their field offices would get the same level of service as headquarters,” Woolner says. “Because Duplitron has developed strong business relationships and friendships with top Laserfiche VARs around the country, I’ve been able to assign installations and follow-up service to them, knowing they’ll be taken care of in the same way as if we have done them ourselves.”
Commonwealth, a six-time Investment Advisor “Broker-Dealer of the Year” winner, is recognized industry-wide for its use of advanced technology to improve customer service and make its independent financial planners more productive. Sundberg appreciates Laserfiche’s Integrators Toolkit, allowing him to tie Laserfiche into other Commonwealth applications.
Laserfiche has aggressively pursued the financial services market in recent years, recognizing that document imaging technology offers broker-dealers a number of key customer service and productivity differentiators. Thousands of financial planners are using Laserfiche worldwide, often from wireless laptops, as they work with clients in their offices and homes.