Arcus Partners and Sycamore Company Help Meet FINRA Document Storage Requirements

Arcus Partners and Sycamore Company Help Broker-Dealers and RIAs
Meet FINRA Document Storage Requirements While Creating Path to Smart Contracts

• Sycamore and Arcus Partners’ Finity360 leverage the power of Salesforce and AWS to modernize firms’ back-office and document management processes
• Finity360 integration with the Sycamore platform provides industry-compliant document storage, improved client experiences, and path to blockchain

December 4, 2019 – New York, NY – Arcus Partners and Sycamore Company are revolutionizing the way independent broker-dealers and registered investment advisors (RIAs) capture, store and manage documents and serve customers by integrating its Finity360TM Docs blockchain-enabled digital document management solution with Sycamore Company’s back- office platform for managing advisors, compensation, compliance, client relationships and business analytics. Both solutions are natively built on the cloud-based Salesforce platform, giving firms the ability to share user entitlements in one system, with integrated hosting on Amazon Web Services (AWS).

Paper documents cost independent broker-dealers and RIAs hundreds or even thousands of dollars each week in paper, time, storage and, audits. In addition, paper-based and related legacy processes make customer onboarding and service delivery inefficient, which can lead to poor experiences, reputation damage and lost business.

Part of the company’s Finity360 digital data solutions for financial services, Finity360 Docs provides a secure, central online repository of a firm’s legacy agreements, regulatory, legal and other documents – fully compliant with current FINRA and SEC electronic record retention requirements – and blockchain smart contracts. Replacing the Notes and Attachments capabilities of the Sycamore platform, Finity360 Docs’ machine learning capabilities make documents instantly accessible within Sycamore while helping firms improve operational workflows and integration with downstream systems.

Michael Overdorf, president of Sycamore, said: “Broker-dealers and RIAs should no longer feel they need to accept outdated, inefficient and disparate back-office technology. Sycamore and Arcus Partners share a similar goal to help industry players transform their business operations by upgrading their systems. Providing regulatory-compliant document storage through Finity360 Docs on the Sycamore platform gives firms peace of mind for meeting FINRA and SEC storage requirements, and once and for all, further modernizes their processes, onboarding and client experiences.”

Paul Stringer, chief operating officer at Arcus Partners, said: “Legacy technology environments are limiting firms’ ability to participate in modern ecosystems designed to drive faster time to revenue and stronger competitive advantage. Because our Finity360 solutions are blockchain- enabled, we future-proof firms’ technology investments while creating a simple path from legacy environments to new technologies such as smart contracts.”

About Sycamore

The Sycamore Company is dedicated to providing a best-practice solutions philosophy to the financial services industry. We are committed to the current web technology environment using cloud computing to offer broker-dealers and RIAs on-demand, modern and integrated software applications that revolutionize back-office processes every firm must manage such as compensation, advisors, compliance and client information as well as analyze important trends and behaviors across the firm.

For more information, visit https://sycamorecompany.com/.

About Arcus Partners

Arcus Partners helps financial services companies – including financial advisors, broker-dealers and FCMs – gain instant access and greater value from their mission-critical data which is often locked up in back-office or CRM platforms. The company’s cloud-based data management solutions, system integration and Salesforce.com automation services help firms increase operational efficiencies by maximizing the functionality and utilization of their CRM and back- office systems. With more than 30 years of experience in capital markets, securities back-office operations, data aggregation and system integration, Arcus Partners’ Finity360 data management solutions provide financial institutions with a highly agile, scalable and customizable way of gaining maximum business value from their data, systems, documents and operations workflows.

For more information, visit https://www.arcuspartners.com/.

Trademark information: Finity360 is a trademark of Arcus, Inc. All other trademarks belong to their respective owners.

Quik! Integrates with Sycamore

Quik! Integrates with Sycamore

Partnership Brings Quik! Forms Automation Solution to Sycamore Company’s Back-Office Software

TORRANCE, Calif. (November 7, 2019) – Quik! today announced a partnership with Sycamore Company delivers access to Quik!’s automated forms solution right from the Sycamore ecosystem. The integration reduces the inefficiencies and errors of manual forms and increases productivity. Sycamore users are able to complete paperwork at the click of a button to complete and submit a variety of transactions. Madison Avenue Securities, LLC will be the first customer to deploy the integration, with Sycamore clients having access to all forms in Quik!’s forms library.

“We’re dedicated to bringing value to customers by always improving on Sycamore’s capabilities, and this partnership with Quik! expands our capabilities to offer more forms automation solutions,” said Michael Overdorf, president of Sycamore.

As a turnkey integration with Sycamore, Quik! can be turned on and made available to customers rapidly, which saves time and money over the traditional integrations required by forms solutions. With access to the entire Quik! library of forms, all types of transactions are possible and well managed by Sycamore.

“More than 80 percent of manual forms are never completed or submitted – that’s money left on the table,” said Richard Walker, CEO and founder of Quik!. “Bringing the most robust forms automation solution to Sycamore means users will have easy access to completely pre-fillable forms to complete transactions quickly and accurately.”

To learn more about Quik! and its ability to generate custom form solutions, please visit: http://www.quikforms.com/.
To learn more about Sycamore, visit https://sycamorecompany.com/.

The Solution to Cost-Effective Compliance — No Matter What the DOL Decides

The Department of Labor (DOL) and the current administration are in a high stakes game of tug-of-war over the specifics of the fiduciary rule, leaving broker-dealers and RIAs in a prolonged state of limbo. The first phase of the rule went into effect June 9, 2017, but timing around when the second and final phase will be rolled out is yet to be determined. Depending on who you ask, it could be as early as January 2018, as late as July 2019 — or perhaps never.

Stuck Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Considering the extensive ramifications that the rule is slated to have on broker-dealer and RIA offices around the country, this period of uncertainty is understandably quite frustrating for professionals within the industry. Many are finding themselves in a no-win situation, forced to pick between two flawed choices:

1. Hire more manpower in preparation for the increased burden upcoming regulations will create.
2. Wait out the back-and-forth to determine the total extent of the changes before adding what could be significant staffing costs.

The first option poses the risk of substantial overspending — while the second may leave the company vulnerable to costly fines if they find they’re unable to keep up with regulation increases due to an initial shortage of resources.

Hiring More People Doesn’t Scale — Technology Does

The reality is, the fiduciary rule is potentially just one set of sweeping regulations in the pipeline. More could come down from on high at any time. Broker-dealers and RIAs have next to no control over how the rules change in the future, and to what extent they do. For this reason, hiring more people to support compliance cannot be a long-term solution, and should not be a short-term one for companies interested in a scalable solution.

Fortunately, as the rules have become more complicated, technology has evolved to take on the challenge of executing mandates with the speed, accuracy, and flexibility that companies require to keep up with the pace of rising regulations — and even get ahead of the game.

Want Complete Peace of Mind? Gain Total Control of Your Data

Modern, integrated, CRM software solutions exist that can empower your company to manage all primary business functions — including commission reporting, compliance review, and client/advisor management — on a single, could-based platform.

Think Salesforce on steroids. Salesforce, after all, wasn’t designed with broker-dealers and RIAs in mind. While it has many impressive capabilities, key tools essential to a CRM for those in the financial services industry are lacking. But everything it’s missing can be rectified with the right integrated software overlay.

In addition to greatly cutting the labor costs of attempting to keep up with regulatory changes by hiring additional human resources, automating compliance requirements by leveraging a single technological solution saves time, increases efficiencies, and reduces the risk of human error.

Not All Technology Is Created Equal

While many companies offer regtech and other software solutions for financial professionals, we at Sycamore understand that when it comes to technology one size never fits all. Our team is comprised of people with backgrounds in both finance and tech, so when we create tools for broker-dealers and RIAs, we understand the unique needs of broker-dealers and RIAs, especially as they pertain to regulations and compliance.

The deep knowledge Sycamore developers bring to the table are a big part of what our clients tell us makes the Sycamore platform exceptional. Our people know the difference between essential features for financial professionals and bells and whistles that just get in the way of getting the job done.

Clients also like the comprehensive training the platform comes with — which, in combination with its ease of use, ensures the technology is an asset and not yet another obstacle to overcome. And finally, our clients enjoy the value generated through our partnership.

Because we’re as invested in our clients’ needs as they are, we maintain watch for upcoming regulatory changes just as closely. When new rules arise, our team is ready with the backend changes required to keep up with regulations, so that our clients can keep doing what they do best without missing a beat.

Laser App Event Round-Up Part II: Why We Don’t Use Flip Phones Anymore

Last week, we recapped our client’s presentation at the 2017 Laser App Financial Services Conference, where Prospera Financial Services discussed the benefits of partnering with Sycamore Company.

In this week’s blog, we recap our own experience where our Business Development Consultant, Mary Blackburn, had the opportunity to more fully explain the benefits of Sycamore’s platform.

To start, what is Sycamore Company? In short, we are a cloud-based back-end technology platform that includes commission processing, compliance and advisor management for broker-dealers and RIAs.

What makes us different? One way to think about it that resonated at the conference, is when Mary asked the audience: “How many of you are still using a flip phone?” Of course, the answer was a resounding “no.”

“Was the flip phone not just the greatest invention?” Mary asked attendees. “You could make and get phone calls anytime, anywhere. It kept you connected — but all it did was make phone calls. That’s why the flip phone was the greatest thing ever, until the smartphone.”

She pulled out her own smartphone, showed it to the audience. Suddenly you’ve got one device that gives you access to a phone, email, research, documents — anything you need is right there. Yes, the flip phone still works, but a smartphone is a much better version.

Sycamore Company is like the smartphone for back office technology. We are the modern, integrated platform that is becoming today’s industry standard. And because we build everything on the Salesforce platform, you can go to the Salesforce app exchange and download whatever you might need to help your business run more efficiently.

Key Takeaways
LaserApp was a good opportunity to network with like-minded professionals as well as a great platform to talk about the major strides in technology that have been made for our clients’ benefit.

We continue to work to get the word out to broker-dealer and RIAs that they don’t have to settle for outdated back-end technology solutions – we’re here to make the job easier and technology that does anything less is holding you back from reaching your full potential.

2017 Laser App Financial Services Conference: Event Round-Up Part I: Prospera Review

We recently had the opportunity to join our client, Prospera Financial Services, at the 2017 Laser App Financial Services Conference earlier this year. Marco Galvan, IT Manager with Prospera, took to the stage to talk about their experience utilizing our platform.

Case in Point
Prospera Financial Services is an independent broker dealer firm that supports financial advisors across the country. Last year, they were in the market for software that would seamlessly integrate with Salesforce and ultimately enable them to work smarter, to future-proof their business, and to provide their clients with next-level efficiency and functionality. Most importantly, it had to be easy for their clients to use — or they knew they would risk losing them.

During the presentation, Marco described in detail the incredible level of success they’ve had with the rollout of COREngine, their customized version of our Salesforce-integrated software solution. While working with Prospera to build and deliver COREngine, we incorporated auto form filling, agility, powerful data aggregation, reporting, file storage, and mobile responsiveness — all must-haves for Prospera. And as new needs arise, Marco mentioned he felt comfortable reaching out to request changes from Sycamore directly. This has been especially helpful with DOL and additional regulations coming down the line — their partnership with us has allowed them to react extremely fast and make updates as quickly as necessary.

Of our customer-client relationship, Marco said, “I don’t think of Sycamore as just another vendor — because they’re not. They’re our partner. We’re getting as much support from them as ideas they’re getting from us to make their product better. It really is collaborative. And that’s an exciting thing.”

We go to many conferences each year and to be honest, sometimes we see the value and sometimes we don’t. But to have a client speak about the benefits of working with Sycamore Company is a true testament to the platform we are building, and how we are working to revolutionize the industry.

Check out Marco’s full presentation here.