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Texting Support For Advisors Heats Up

Hearsay Systems has added an automated compliance supervision component to its Relate platform.

There is increasing choice when it comes to technology support for texting clients as part of an advisor’s compliant communication strategy.

Hearsay Systems announced Dec. 17 an automated compliance supervision offering for text messaging that is a component of the Hearsay Relate compliant texting platform launched in 2018. The new tool is meant to proactively protect firms from financial service and telecommunication industry requirements.

"We've learned that simply offering archiving capabilities for a text messaging channel is not enough to meet compliance needs,” said Chris Fernandes, Head of Legal & Compliance for Hearsay Systems. 

He said because texting channels place no constraints on the types of conversations that advisors can have with clients, compliance personnel could be overwhelmed performing manual review of all such conversations.

The new offering uses a set of pre-built lexicon lists to align with firm-based rules, as well as industry and consumer protection regulations. For example, advisors either cannot use words that are clearly prohibited by these regulations, or conversations can be flagged to a compliance administrator if and when a word associated with problematic behavior is used.

“This influences advisors to have productive conversations with clients while reducing the review burden on compliance teams,” Fernandes said.  As advisors continue to converse with clients using Hearsay Relate, he said the lexicons can be updated to address specific use cases and changes in the regulatory environment.

The new tool and the Hearsay Relate platform it is a part of are typically used for managing large groups of brokers or advisors. Hearsay also has dedicated customer success, support and compliance consulting teams to help firms in rolling out 1,000-user or larger deployments.

Hearsay’s offering, while comprehensive, is not the only one to support compliant texting, though its ability to automatically flag out-of-compliance or questionable texting behavior in real time is thus far unique. Popular CRM provider Redtail Technology launched a compliant tool to support advisor texting from an archival and retention perspective in 2017. MyRepChat launched its first offering for supervision and retention in 2019.

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