Business Consulting & Education

How we work with advisors

When you engage with Schwab, you receive the full power of the insights we’ve gained—through clear and actionable consulting and education programs focused on the key business challenges you face. Working together in support of your vision, we can convert insights into actions that elevate your firm to new levels of success. 

Our core philosophy

  • We focus only on independent advisory firms, concentrating our expertise on a core set of issues growing firms encounter.
  • We work collaboratively with advisors to generate actionable insights that drive results.
  • We believe the most transformative outcomes are achieved when we can challenge advisors’ thinking and uncover powerful opportunities that lead to meaningful change.
  • Our work is rooted in gaining a deep understanding of advisors’ unique challenges and the future they envision for their firm.
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Business management and technology consulting

Our engagements are designed to go deep into your business with you, exploring your unique situation and bringing our years of RIA experience to support you in advancing your firm.

Core consulting engagements

  • Mastering Strategic Planning—Create a road map to achieve your firm’s vision, and align your leadership team on strategic goals and business priorities—including firm investments and hiring.
  • Transition on Your Terms—Craft a succession plan that supports the unique goals of firm owners and lays the foundation for your firm’s continuity and your employees’ and clients’ continued well-being.
  • Firm Performance and Benchmarking Consultation—Understand how your firm performs in critical business measures to help guide your strategic decisions. Firms who participate in the RIA Benchmarking Study work together with their relationship manager to identify strengths and opportunities.
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Core consulting engagements

  • Creating a Referral Culture—Train and energize your staff to bring your firm’s value proposition to life through memorable, repeatable narratives for authentic conversations with prospects and clients.
  • Leveraging Centers of Influence—Develop a well-crafted strategy to activate your professional networks and consistently generate high-quality referrals.
  • Managing Client Profitability—Explore segmentation as a way to create capacity, increase productivity, and ensure profitability while safeguarding an exceptional client experience.
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Core consulting engagements

  • Transforming the Client Experience—Create a technology strategy and action plan that ensures an excellent—and manageable—experience for clients while helping you streamline processing, increase flexibility, and simplify interactions.
  • Optimizing Your CRM—Assess your current CRM use, and develop a well-defined plan to help you make a CRM-centric work environment a reality.
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Core consulting and online education

Cybersecurity consulting engagement—Uncover potential cybersecurity gaps through an in-depth assessment, and develop a detailed action plan to help strengthen and maintain your firm’s program. 

Cybersecurity Resource Center—A resource designed to give you information, tools, and a guided process to help you: 

  • Understand the regulatory and fraud environment
  • Develop, strengthen, and maintain your cybersecurity program
  • Educate employees on roles and responsibilities for protecting firm and client information
  • Educate clients on best practices for protecting information 
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Our core consulting process

Our collaborative approach follows an expert process and focuses on topics of critical importance to RIAs, spanning the entire life cycle of a firm, from inception to transition and beyond.

 
 

Discovery

Through discovery and dialogue, we help uncover the issues that are important to you and help you articulate what you want to accomplish.
 

Analysis

Through analysis and incisive decisions, we help you develop a sound strategy and course of action to prioritize and meet your goals.
 

Implementation

Then, through focused implementation, we give you the tools to manage change in your firm, with ongoing support from your relationship manager to see it through to successful completion.

Benchmarking study and tools

Schwab’s annual RIA Benchmarking Study makes it easy to see where your firm stands in critical business measures relative to your peers. Well over 1,000 firms participate annually—representing more than $750 billion in assets under management—to gain deep insights that help guide their strategic decision-making.

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RIA Benchmarking Study

The power of the RIA Benchmarking Study lies in the robust peer data it provides—data that lets you clearly see how your business is performing in the marketplace.

  • Peer Report—When you participate, you receive a 45-page customized report that provides key performance indicators—asset & revenue growth, financial performance, staffing levels & productivity, sources of new clients, services & pricing, and technology spending—that benchmark your results compared with firms of a similar size and business model.
  • Compensation Report—When you complete the compensation section, you also receive a personalized Compensation Report. You’ll get national and regional salary and incentive data drawn from thousands of employees in key roles, as well as employee benefit and ownership distribution information.
  • —Compensation study participants also receive access to Schwab’s dynamic online tool for additional industry-specific information.

Why advisors participate in the study

Watch videos to hear directly from advisors about how they’ve leveraged information and insights from their customized Benchmarking Study results to evolve their firms.  

Technology Adoption Scorecard

The scorecard lets firms benchmark their adoption of technology against that of their peers.

In a user-friendly format, the scorecard helps firms identify opportunities to improve their back-office efficiency and enhance their client experience. It also opens access to resources, tools, and training to help firms take action.

Education and leadership

We are committed to helping your firm succeed and grow with compelling education and powerful insights.

Executive Leadership Program

This exclusive one-year program of personal and professional growth is designed to prepare promising leaders to manage and grow RIA firms. The program combines premier academic curricula and faculty from some of the nation’s top graduate schools, one-on-one executive coaching, and the deep industry experience of Schwab Advisor Services™.

Through meeting in person and connecting during weekly discussions, participants build valuable connections with other future leaders—leaders who continue to support one another through their careers.

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Compliance and regulatory resources

Through Compliance Review white papers and our regulatory webcast series, we help advisors stay ahead of the curve with evolving compliance and regulatory requirements.

Thought leadership

Take the lead on industry trends and best practices with our comprehensive white papers covering a range of RIA-specific topics, from strategic planning to building an effective referral strategy.

Schwab Advisor University®

Learn how to get the most from Schwab Advisor Center® tools and enhance firm productivity by leveraging a range of online training courses.

SOLUTIONS®

SOLUTIONS is an annual, one-day workshop in select cities across the country designed to help firms run their technology and operations more efficiently and securely. You’ll gain insights directly from Schwab’s technology specialists, along with opportunities to network with your peers.