BNY Discretionary Fund Managers

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The DFM Persona

Many different managers with different roles, attitudes and approaches. They are very different personalities and expectations. It's very difficult to describe a stereotype. What they do all share is depth - of information, expertise and experience. You have to go deep with them.

  • Typical wealth manager (stockbroker) - big on research and wealth management, make their own decisions, lots of personal interaction.

  • Research teams who don't do client work

  • Multi managers - portfolio of products - rated funds with different asset allocations. Products pushed out to various routes (also through IFA)

The Variables For Their Key Interests

  • How they look at data/stats

  • The importance of ‘attractiveness’ of the product

  • The clients of the wealth manager and their persona (old school vs young blood - building their name) - NB. The old school is a dying breed, but power is still at the old school end at the moment. The end client varies - e:g - the family can be the end client, the ones we need to look after are whoever is stewarding their assets. Wealth managers may be given direction on funds to select if the end client is exploring themselves or getting recommendations from others. If they hear about a large/popular fund they will ask for it.



The Primary Needs

Relevant, Timely & Accurate information - E

  • Understanding & Education, Thought Leadership - A, C

  • Highly Personalised Data- D, E, F, G, H, K, L

  • Timely, accurate follow-up responses- G, H, L

  • Inv. Committee meeting support - H

  • Standardised or bespoke requirements - K

  • Clear & Simple client portal - K

  • Pragmatic, realistic & responsive discussion - H

  • Clarity of investment solutions & thought-pieces - D

  • Automated Monthly & Quarterly Docs - H, K

  • Realistic timeframes- MET - I

  • Continued communication around asset class opportunities - H, J, K

  • Articulation of barriers - G, H

  • External Ratings - H

  • Timely notification of delays - I

  • Automated Monthly & Quarterly Docs - H, K

Genuine stand-out product (not Sales-push) - C

  • Attractive fee structure - A

  • Preferable outcome to existing product - A, B

  • Outcome that suits changing regulatory environment - A

  • Outcome that suits changing Client Demands - A, B

  • Potential product aligned with Allocation change - B

  • Continued outcomes aligned to initial investment - B

  • Clear articulation of solution- Priority= presentation -F

  • Proof of concept - F

  • Continued articulation of solution - J

  • Product Availability (Platform & Direct) - Current & realistic ambitions - H, I

  • Clarity of value-add - A

Access to expertise and support when needed

  • Help with product to satisfy operational/regulatory requirements - C

  • Clarity of investment solutions & thought-pieces - D

  • Personal interaction with Investment houses - D

  • Key Personnel access - E, K

  • Continuity of People - E, F, G, H

  • Support from superior members of staff - F

  • Support from other analysts - F

  • Smooth interaction - I

  • Personal interaction with wider stakeholders - J

  • Identifying and fixing issues when needed - L

  • Proactive engagement - L

  • Continued support to redemption process

  • Smooth Transition

  • Continued communication around asset class opportunities

  • Repairing of relations

Selection Criteria

Source Mackay Williams

  1. Quality of Fund Management Team

  2. Investment Strategy/Philosophy

  3. Information Provision/Reporting

  4. Risk Management

  5. Investment Process

  6. Pricing

  7. Coverage of Business Demand

  8. Fund Size and Liquidity

  9. Support/Service

  10. Contact with Management

  11. Fund History

  12. Solidity of Company

  13. External Fund Ratings

  14. Brand

Key Drivers of Success in Europe, Mid Year Update 2018, Mackay Williams


Making Content Work harder - doing everything we can to add 'colour' to our products and give us conversation starters so that we can target more. In an ideal world we come equipped with highly tailored presentations that align closely to what the client is looking for. The best meetings are those where it's easy to define just what the client is looking for.

  • Better equipping sales teams

  • Owning the keywords

  • Theme based events

  • Opinion Pieces and Expert Perspectives

Deepening Client Insight for Better Targeting - picking the right moments by knowing who is looking for what and when. The people that really matter makes up a relatively small pool. In the discretionary world we know most of the key stakeholders. What we care about is knowing the key influencers within a client company. It's hard at this stage to know who within a client organisation is looking at what and what they are most interested in. Our targeting is not optimal. There are different views for what each person is interested in. Nirvana would be the ability for clients to log into a BNY website to personalise their preferences

  • Capturing more data from the client

  • Extending use of Salesforce?

  • Deepening knowledge of the client ecosystem

  • Finding more emotional connections at key moments of truth

The Future Product Laboratory - Product development is currently largely reactive - based on demand. It's rarely ahead of the game. The model today is more push than pull. What we want is the ability to take insights to boutiques to encourage them to adopt the funds that we see are needed. Timing of this is key and we have to have a credible product at a time that is right for them - so that means incubation has to factor this in. We are getting new exciting funds in now but not necessarily at the right time.

  • Becoming more proactive

  • Harnessing data, insight and client input

  • Conducting gap analysis for next product

  • Tighter alignment between Sales and Product Development

Better Data Hubs - Timelines will be set for key stages and that will map to the information needed. Some data can be provided quickly, others takes a lot more effort. We should always be able to provide this client with the information they need - any criticisms tend to be around timeliness. This is an area that is widely recognised as being weak because no one wants to do the work on the data. There are big wins to be found here that would equip teams better and create powerful experiences. If the hub housed commentary, input from fund managers, insights, comparisons - for example - we can give clients more rounded information.

  • High Value Information that feels personal

  • More and better rounded Information

  • More consistent approach to feedback

  • Rapid personalisation

  • Faster turn round of information

The Client Portal - During on boarding communications are via email or phone calls. At the moment this is very people intense - there is room for creating online support to let people focus on specialist care. Having a client portal would be a good start. A lot of this automation could be more beneficial to the BNY team than the client. But the freedom it would create would free up people to do the more valuable things.

There is a preference setting in salesforce that may not be doing what we'd like. It's more of a marketing process at the moment and doesn't lead to something being sent to them. Clients get these fact sheets from a variety of sources and it's very obvious when ours is taking longer to get to them than others - they hold all fact sheets in one place - they don't want to go to multiple places for each one.

What clients want is accurate, fast data on performance - benchmarked, against different time frames - plus a supporting textual (audio, visual, written) that provides all the background. Historically this has been on PDF attachments but there is no reason it has to remain in that format.

  • Increase the Automation to Free up Resource

  • Online Rate Card

  • Better Preference Management

  • Step by Step Guidance

  • Multiple ways to access personal opinion

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This can be triggered in different ways. Some of this can come through educational interactions - which offer us a significant moment of influence. Our ability to make contact with a client at this early stage will help us shape the relationship very early


  • Confidence that they are well informed and up to date with latest information

  • The ability to go deep into the data


  • Belief that they have access to the best

  • Connection to the best experts


  • Ability to easily shop across funds and build the best portfolio

  • Information is available when needed and answers all the questions

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Conversation is happening at any time but there are key meetings where we talk specifically about their potential selection. This is a key moment of developing relationship. Coming fully prepared with the right information and having the best fund manager for this sale gives us the best experience. We can't control that as much as we'd like currently. Knowing - for example - the nature of the meeting (highly technical for instance) helps to know what and who to bring.

Where continuity of people is not possible, continuity of information becomes more critical. Poor or slow information is unlikely to lose the deal, but it will impact experience and may influence the chances of further business


  • Perfect matching of need to information provided


  • It’s clear the BNY team know exactly what the client is looking for

  • A consistently personal interaction


  • Information is available when needed and answers all the questions

  • Deadlines are met consistently

  • Highly personalised information

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Keeping the client updated and making the process as clear as possible is critical. In some actions the client will be involved - who that is will depend on the company. They will decide who is the appropriate contact. The decision maker will feel that the journey has ended, and this stage should be trivial - to be told asap that they are ready to invest. The firm will have a number of wealth manages in the firm and a research team.

There will be a buy list of approved funds and ours will now be added. This is an opportunity for us to influence them to select our products.


  • Always up to date on performance

  • Underperformance is well explained


  • Concerns are addressed quickly and with an appreciation of the issue

  • Continued access to preferred experts


  • Information is available when needed and answers all the questions

  • No delays in ability to start investing

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The Touch Points

  • Marketing Collateral

  • Educational Material

  • Seminars

  • Events

  • Social Media

  • Sales Meetings

  • Fund Manager/CPM Interactions

  • Client Services team

  • Emails

  • Phone Calls

  • RFP Response

  • Fact Sheets

  • Commercial Terms

  • Legal/Compliance Documents

  • Distribution Agreement

  • Performance Commentaries