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22 April 2021

Black Diamond: Innovative, Flexible, and Cost-Effective Solution Drives Growth

Triad Advisors was founded in 1998 for hybrid advisors to work under a broker-dealer’s corporate RIA and/or the advisor’s own independent RIA. This model provided advisors flexibility as to how they wanted to affiliate and operate their advisory businesses and fueled Triad’s growth. For more than a dozen years, Triad has been notably recognized as the number one “RIA-friendly” broker-dealer.*


With Triad’s steady growth over time, more and more advisors were looking to leverage multiple custodians, as well as leverage the infrastructure of a larger institution, especially related to technology and service. As this demand grew, Triad leadership saw the opportunity to grow in a new and exciting way. To do this, Triad set about creating a second, separate corporate RIA that would bring the best of both worlds—Triad’s broker-dealer infrastructure and support with a multi-custodian, technology-enabled RIA platform. What is known today as Triad Hybrid Solutions.


According to Amy Rehn, Chief Operating Officer for Triad’s hybrid business, “Advisors were telling us that they needed help with technology, that the process was just too overwhelming for them to evaluate—particularly as the industry was changing so rapidly. As a result, we set out to offer them a multi-custodian technology platform that included the core aspects of aggregation, client reporting, and CRM capabilities.”


Rehn noted, “This project was of high priority and we looked to narrow our technology search and solve for three core fundamentals: innovation, flexibility, and cost. Innovation was extremely important to us as we didn’t want to have to keep changing vendors as technology improved and advisor demands changed. Additionally, we needed to support multiple locations and firm sizes from one-person shops to large regional firms, so flexibility was paramount. Lastly, cost was of course a factor so that as we grew, our overhead didn’t keep increasing and we could gain scale.”


All of these factors led Rehn and her team to select the Black Diamond® Wealth Platform. “Black Diamond’s capabilities made them the clear first choice, however, the fact that we also were aligned culturally made the difference,” Rehn said. “Similar to Black Diamond, we also have a spirit of innovation and are committed to making continuous investments in our business and technology so that our advisors can thrive.”


Additionally, according to Rehn, Black Diamond’s many integrations and elegant user interface have been instrumental in driving adoption and usage. “There are a few core components such as Riskalyze, MoneyGuidePro®, and eMoney that a majority of our advisors are using. The tight integrations in Black Diamond mean we can provide our advisors with a comprehensive experience.”


Plus, the mobile-friendly Client Experience portal has been instrumental for advisors because they are able to provide a digital financial hub that exceeds client expectations. “Advisors have the power to tailor the portal offering to fit the unique needs of their clients. This way the advisor can demonstrate their value while strengthening transparency and trust,” noted Rehn.


But what truly stands out to Rehn are the data mining tools in Black Diamond. “From a home office management point of view, it is such a luxury to be able to pull out the important information we need to forecast and plan for the future, as well as pull the key data points for regulatory mandates, such as completing our annual form ADV. Black Diamond is an important part of our books and records.”


Going forward, Rehn is looking to continue to create, a “singular, silver bullet experience” for advisors by better aligning their Salesforce CRM with Black Diamond. “We expect that Data Broker™ from SS&C Salentica will bring it all together for us, yet another key advantage of Black Diamond being part of SS&C. All of this will be what we need to expand our pipeline and better attract larger, and often more complex, advisory firms through a much more flexible, customizable platform that will be our growth engine going forward.”


“No one wants an out of the box experience and Black Diamond has been a great example of providing such a forward-looking platform,” said Rehn. “With their constant innovation and new feature releases, they are thinking of the things we will need that we haven’t even thought of yet.”


To learn more about how Black Diamond can be your technology partner, request a personalized demo today.