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CRM Included for Schwab, TD Ameritrade Forthcoming Platforms

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July 22, 2011

CRM Included for Schwab, TD Ameritrade Forthcoming Platforms

By David Sims, TMCnet Contributing Editor

It’s not a race. It just... looks like one.

Industry observer Davis Janowski recently wrote that Schwab Institutional and TD Ameritrade Institutional are both speeding up their efforts to “deliver a unified technology platform to their registered investment adviser clients.”

But it’s not a race, mind you.

What makes it interesting, Janowski notes, is that the two competitors, are taking “fundamentally different approaches.” Schwab wants to design and support its platform in-house, TD thinks the way to go is to partner with third-party providers.

Schwab isn’t talking about the platform or what apps we can expect to see on it. What Janowski did learn is that Schwab Intelligent Integration will offer advisers “a range of software choices bundled within two distinct” offerings, with multiple third-party applications including customer relationship management, portfolio management, financial planning and document management, among others – for example, what he calls “a highly customized version of (News - Alert),” as well as a choice between Microsoft Dynamics and Junxure from CRM Software Inc.

TD Ameritrade Institutional is more forthcoming about what they’re up to, describing it as providing what Janowski says will be “a development environment to its partners that mimics the open-application programming interface for its Veo production environment – its back-office account management and trading platform.”

At the end of May TMC’s (News - Alert) Anuradha Shukla wrote that TD Ameritrade Institutional offered advisors a new Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software assessment tool that simplifies the selection of a CRM vendor.

TD Ameritrade Institutional is a division of TD Ameritrade, Inc., and a subsidiary of TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation.

The company noted that its new CRM software assessment tool is based on research findings in the Advisor Technology Reports: CRM Edition, a study sponsored by TD Ameritrade Institutional and conducted by the Financial Planning Association and ActiFi,1 a practice management software and solutions firm, Shukla wrote.

Jon Patullo, director of technology product management at TD Ameritrade Institutional, told Janowski that there are now 30 third-party firms “actively in the process of gaining access to the API.” Slated for inclusion as of this writing are MoneyGuidePro and three CRM applications – AppCrown, RedTail and Ebix (News - Alert).

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David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of David’s articles, please visit his columnist page. He also blogs for TMCnet here.

Edited by Jennifer Russell
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