Commonwealth Financial Network
Building the next generation financial advisor website platform
Commonwealth Financial Network, the USA's largest privately held independent broker/dealer–RIA*, supports more than 1,650 independent financial advisors nationwide, providing industry leading tools, resources, and support allowing affiliated advisors to run their business their way.
Deliver a new digital platform to help financial advisors easily build and maintain websites, while improving usability, flexibility and mobile friendliness.
The main goal was for the design and development of a more robust and totally revamped digital platform. Always looking to improve, Commonwealth is focused on having all of its tools be incredibly easy to use, flexible and powerful. For the website program, this means creating a tool that a financial advisor can feel as comfortable editing as they would a simple document, while at the same time allowing these advisors to create mobile-friendly, highly customized sites that reflect their personal brand.
Commonwealth chose CI&T based on their extensive knowledge and experience with site builder platforms, and based their shared culture of pushing the technology envelope.
The new solution is now able to quickly fire up new web sites with revamped functionalities and look and feel, and with very little manual intervention or maintenance. Totally based on APIs that extend the core, Drupal based Acquia Cloud Site Factory functionalities, CI&T relied on many of its out-of-the-box features yet developing a final touch of custom code to adapt, quickly, to Commonwealth’s advanced requirements. Thanks to this architectural decision, the development effort was significantly reduced, allowing CI&T to meet the aggressive development deadlines set up for the engagement.
Bottom line, the solution implemented a more modern and robust architecture and was mobile-friendly, resulting in more value to Commonwealth's advisors and their clients and increased ease of creating and maintain the websites.
How CI&T executed
CI&T conducted an intense discovery phase with key Commonwealth personnel, gathering the major business and technical requirements, their goals, and how the recommended platform should play an important role in the project execution, performance and time to market. Important to mention that Commonwealth's intimate knowledge, vision and ability to lay out the roadmap were key to a successful result.
By relying on its proven Enterprise Agile process, CI&T was able to deliver a totally functional MVP of the new platform in less than 3 months, including the discovery and architectural foundation, which pleased Commonwealth as they could start demonstrating the platform in accordance to their aggressive timing expectations.
CI&T's extensive knowledge of Drupal and Acquia Cloud Site Factory was key to defining and implementing a robust architecture, therefore leveraging the foundation needed for rapid development and value activation.
CI&T partnered with Acquia to leverage its Acquia Cloud Site Factory tool and build a new digital platform for Commonwealth, providing a totally revamped UX and mobile friendly web portal to more than 800 financial advisors.
Since the launch of the new platform, Commonwealth Financial reported many improvements over the previous solution, which helped them fulfil the major strategic goals set during its inception:
- Boosted customer experience: enhanced functionality has helped reduce development time for a new site by 50%
- Enhanced analytics: mobile-friendly websites are now leveraging better SEO results.
- 750 websites are in the process of being migrated over to the new platform. More than half of these have already been converted, with a target date of the end of 2016 for all sites.
- Leveraging self-service, 5 employees are able to holistically serve 1900 advisors and staff to help create and maintain their sites.
- Time to market: 50% faster website development
- Visibility: Better SEO results
- Scale: 750 websites being migrated to the new platform
- Optimization: 5 team members to serve 1,900 advisors