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Crucial Questions when Financial Professionals Shop for Appointment Setting Services

By Executive Scheduling Associates CEO Mitch Santala

Not all appointment-setting services supporting financial wholesalers and advisors are created equal. So, to assist your search for a high-quality scheduler, we narrowed down what we believe to be your must-ask questions.

The first question we recommend is, "Are your schedulers W2 employees or independent contractors?" This might be your most important question because there are numerous benefits to working with W2 schedulers compared to independent contractors.

Infographic of Why financial Advisors Use Appointment Setting Services

For example, independent contractors often measure their services simply with time. When this is the only factor being used to quantify output, success targets become too subjective. In contrast, W2 employee schedulers are legally held accountable for when, where, and how your service is provided - allowing for unbiased metrics to be set when measuring success, like task counts and meeting results.

In addition, working with an independent contractor isn't quickly scalable. What happens when your scheduler goes on vacation or falls sick? Often, there's no backup when such workers are no-shows.

On the other hand, firms that use W2 employees can manage their support of your work in such a way that when scheduler A misses a day, scheduler B can pick up their projects without missing a beat. This way, when your scheduler goes on vacation, your calendar doesn't.

The second question to ask when shopping for a scheduling service is, "What technologies do your schedulers use?" If the support professional you're using still dials manually using a spreadsheet, it's time to consider getting a new scheduler. Emerging database and dialing software can help maximize results in this field of service while controlling costs.

For example, a scheduler who is calling from a spreadsheet can make around 12-15 calls per hour. In contrast, a scheduler who uses current technology can make 20-25 calls per hour while still maintaining the human touch you want your clients to experience. The productivity increase takes place between calls. An increase in call efficiency will usually result in increased scheduled meetings.

Let me offer one more question when shopping for an appointment-setting service. "Does your company have a compliance officer and require regular scheduler compliance training?" You might think this question is unnecessary because schedulers are not licensed to price, pitch, and promise your products. However, these waters can easily be muddied without compliance supervision and training.

As you know, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority strictly enforces professionals practicing in the insurance and securities spaces. The last thing you want to experience is your scheduler navigating into unlicensed and illegal territory.

Having regular compliance training and a compliance officer within your appointment setting service gives you peace of mind knowing all actions conform to the latest industry standards.

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