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Launching an RIA: What you need to know

Whether you are ready to become an independent RIA, just starting to think about it, or finding your path to get there, there are a lot of things that are helpful to know as you make your decision and transition. In this article, we’ll review what goes into making the transition to independence, what you’ll want to do before you leave your current firm, what you should expect during the transition, and what you should execute on after you’ve gained your freedom. 


What to Know Before you Go

It’s important to know why you want to go independent before you do it. Is it because you are having a hard time delivering the level of service your clients expect and you think you can do it better? We strongly believe that choosing your independent path will let you deliver better service and add more value to your clients, but we also know that getting through the process to freedom can be tumultuous. Knowing and owning your ‘why’ will be paramount to your success.

Set a time frame for yourself to give benchmarks around going independent both for your discovery time to understand key decisions and around how long you think it will take to execute those items. Long, drawn-out processes can take a toll on your quality of life, so you’ll want to make sure you understand how long you will be in transition and the levers you control to speed up that process.  


Get Informed

You could choose to project manage the entire process yourself, but that path is quite arduous. It makes much more sense to lean into a relationship with a trusted guide to help you. While you’re gaining momentum to become independent, recognize that you’ll want to use technology and services to help maximize your focus on your clients. You’ll likely want far more than just google reviews to find the right vendors for software and fintech services. Likewise, marketing, websites, and creative work can all be taken off your plate and given to the right people to make the most impact. 

The most intense part of this journey is to not let the momentum of the new business set up steal the time and joy of being a financial advisor. Keeping your business moving in the right direction with detailed oversight is the best catalyst for growth and sustainability.


Once You’re Established

While transition may feel long, once you get to the other side, you’ll have lots of work to do to keep your firm moving forward. From marketing, to compliance, fintech decisions to human resources, you’ll have a lot of decisions that come straight to you. As your firm’s rhythm sets in, you’ll be able to understand which tedious tasks you want to automate or outsource, or to set your sights on hiring staff to alleviate some of the roles you play.

All of these decisions will keep your business back and middle office running while the front office keeps your clients top priority. 

There’s so much more to going independent than an article can cover, because you have specific needs, concerns and desires. If you’re ready to think through a specific need you’re facing, we’d love to talk. Whether your independence day was years ago, yesterday or still a dream, tru Independence is here to help you experience Independence Optimized.