Legacy TAMP Users, It’s Time to Admit Everything is NOT Fine

Published May 12, 2022

If you’re an advisor using a legacy TAMP to run your business, you’ve probably thought this to yourself several times a day:

I’m fine. It’s fine. Everything’s fine.

But it’s far more likely that everything is not fine, and trying to convince yourself otherwise is only going to delay the inevitable—with potentially serious consequences for your business and your blood pressure.

Here’s what, deep down, you already know about your TAMP (we promise this will be therapeutic):

Its platform is outdated.

As the saying goes, you can’t build a house on a shaky foundation. In this case, of course, your business is the house—and your legacy TAMP is the unreliable foundation.

The truth is, most TAMPs were built over 20 years ago. Do you know what else was built 20 years ago? The very first iPod.

How many people do you know that still use an iPod?

Probably none, because now we have all the music we need on our phones. What seemed innovative and remarkably efficient, even wildly cool, 20 years ago is completely irrelevant now.

Beyond technology advances, our industry has changed. Investing has changed. Advisors’ value propositions have changed. Certainly client expectations have changed.

But many legacy TAMPs haven’t updated their foundation to support and keep pace with those changes. Instead, they’ve tried to meet evolving needs by stacking new technology, Frankenstein-ing together a platform that still requires manual effort from you.

Let’s face it, if you’re using a TAMP to reduce your operational burdens, yet you’re having to design manual workarounds and processes to get the job done, is the TAMP worth it? (That’s a rhetorical question. The answer is no.)

It’s missing ‘advisor as portfolio manager’ capabilities.

If you want to make proprietary investment management part of your value proposition, hanging on to your legacy TAMP because it’s what you’ve always used is a mistake—a mistake that could cost you growth and new clients. Creating a unique investment management program is a powerful way to differentiate your firm from ever-increasing competition, don’t let your TAMP hold you back

It’s natural to balk at the thought of switching from your familiar tech stack to something new—after all, you’ve invested a lot of time and money in it (more on that in a moment).

But what about your investment in your firm and its growth? If delivering truly customized portfolios—and maintaining control over the way you market them—will help your business stand out, clinging to your legacy TAMP is only doing you a massive disservice.

The problem is that traditional TAMPs aren’t built to support advisors that retain control of their own portfolio management.

While they can alleviate some operational burdens (which is likely why you’re using one in the first place) TAMPs were truly designed to provide access to thousands of third-party managers, and to conduct both initial and ongoing due diligence on their ever-expanding universe of models and strategists, which are services advisors managing their own models don’t need.

It’s too expensive.

The old adage you get what you pay for is usually true; in many cases, quality costs more. But when it comes to legacy TAMPs, oftentimes, you also pay for what you don’t need.

If you’re managing your own models, as we mentioned above, you don’t need to absorb the massive costs associated with access to and due diligence on strategists.

And if your TAMP outsources certain services or licenses underlying technologies, guess what? You’re paying for those too—which is not fine when you could be using those funds to support your growth efforts instead.

Its service model is missing the ‘service’ component.

Dealing with your TAMP provider shouldn’t feel like dealing with your cable company: frustrating at best and soul-crushing at worst, all with a side of “Can I put you on hold for a moment?”. So why does it?

You’ll notice we used the word provider, not partner. That’s intentional, because most TAMPs act like providers, not partners. They aren’t designed to address the specific needs of your unique enterprise; they’re designed to provide the broadest level of service possible to as many firms as possible.

At the very least, you should have a dedicated relationship manager, a direct connection within the TAMP who knows you, knows your business and your clients, and actively works to help you use the platform most efficiently.

If your TAMP takes an entirely hands-off approach to your experience, if you often can’t get the answers you need, if you never hear from your TAMP about updates, new resources, or platform guidance, none of that is fine.

It’s okay to admit your TAMP isn’t fine. In fact, it’s more than okay. You, your business and your clients deserve a modern technology platform partner that:

• Is built on technology from this decade
• Is reasonably priced
• Is service oriented
• Is designed to support RIAs who manage their own models

Learn more about the evolution of the TAMP model, and find out why GeoWealth is the advisor’s TAMP. Download our eBook here, or get in touch with us to see the difference for yourself.


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