With the phase-in of its new computer system within the past two years, Edward Jones has increased the monthly cost of technology for reps to $1,300 from $900, Jones reps report. An additional $1,000 monthly cost is absorbed by the firm, according to a presentation given to reps by the firm.
Some Jones reps are griping about the increase. One Jones broker from the South says: Theyve saddled us with this very expensive technology. The speed of it and functionality and reliability is dubious. The UNIX platform doesnt allow for off-the-shelf programs. Everythings got to be done in-house, and theyre booked now with Y2K work.
The system has the capability to bring up 180 quotes that are refreshed every 15 seconds, the rep from the South adds. But its not real time, and it has worked on and off. On Oct. 27, they had to disengage it because it was slowing down business and responsiveness. And any attempt to add a new feature bogs down the system or causes errors, the rep says.
But other Jones brokers dont seem to mind the price increase with the new technology. One West Coast Jones rep says: Its a small price to pay, although Ive heard complaints from other reps. We have a great system here and wonderful backup.
A Midwest Jones rep adds: I dont have a problem with it. Our technology is second to no one. He says the computer system that was installed two years ago has increased his business. Clients appreciate the hypotheticals and graphs. And the rep wouldnt mind paying future increases, either, for an upgraded system.
Youve got to pay for technology. Theyre adding new programs every week, he says.
A spokesperson for Edward Jones declined comment.