CFO Essentials is a huge time-saver for us.

- Eric Shore, Shore Wealth Management

CFO Essentials can increase efficiency to increase profitability

Shore Wealth Management founder, Eric Shore, began his career as a financial advisor at a regional firm in 1993. After his now-wife, Lesley, joined that firm in 1996, they made the move to become independent and established Shore Wealth Management in 1998. Their son, Dean, joined them in 2017, and the family-run business prides itself in delivering customized service to their clients, guiding them through each stage of their financial journeys.

Focused on asset management, insurance, and financial and tax planning, the Shores wanted to scale their business quickly. “We knew we wanted to grow, and continue to grow. But we recognized we needed to have a better financial infrastructure in place to take our business to the next level,” said Eric.

The Shores began using LPL Financial’s CFO Solutions service in 2020. Now using CFO Essentials, they have access to a CFO in a more flexible way to streamline budgeting and forecasting processes, improve time management skills, and increase their revenue to help them better serve their clients and achieve their growth strategy.

Strategic planning with a data-driven approach

LPL’s dedicated CFOs help financial professionals reach their objectives by creating personalized action plans with clear goals and key drivers, supported by metrics and benchmarking for maximized results. They identify and implement cost-saving and revenue-generating opportunities that are backed by cash-flow projections, cost-control tactics, and forecasting.

The first change Shore Wealth Management’s CFO strategist implemented in their business was transitioning their desktop accounting software system to an online version, allowing them to build out their five-year budget and plan ahead for major investments and acquisitions.

“Our strategist was very involved as we were getting ready to make a recent acquisition, and was an integral part of helping us put that together—looking at practice valuations, the deal structure, and just really making sure we thought through everything,” said Eric.

He believes the continued checks and balances provided by their CFO hold Shore Management accountable. “We all get busy and have things we want to accomplish. Having that accountability with our CFO strategist is huge—on the performance of our business and particularly on the expense side.” Eric said understanding where they’re spending money and results on investments has helped them make important decisions about their future.

Quarterly meetings with their strategist are organized and thorough, with financial goals at the top of the agenda. A budget and business plan review, stress testing, reporting, measuring against goals set earlier in the year, and prioritizing are also always part of the discussion.

Lesley noted, “Our strategist doesn’t only bring us regular reports, but also thoughts like, ‘Industry averages are this and you guys are doing that—let’s talk about it. Is there something we can change to help with more growth?’”

Along with the tactical benefits of CFO Essentials, Eric values the personal connection to LPL the service offers.

“The most helpful thing is having that person who can navigate all the resources,” said Eric. “There are so many things LPL offers, and having our CFO strategist make sure we're connecting with the right people—it’s been very beneficial.”

With a current practice value of $263 million in brokerage and advisory assets, the Shores are also grateful their CFO knows and understands their practice as well as they do, and can recommend new technologies and other business solutions.

Making the investment for long-term success

Investing in a CFO partner is just smart business to the Shores. “It’s well worth the money,” Lesley remarked.

Eric added he would definitely recommend CFO Essentials to financial professionals who want to run their practice more efficiently. “I would be surprised if it didn’t bring value to most everybody that's a practice of our size.”

The Shores agree they now have a solid understanding of their financials, and are happy with results of their recently completed acquisition. “We've raised almost $40 million in new assets so far this year, beyond the acquisition. It all comes from the work we started years ago with CFO Solutions, which helped us get ready for this type of growth. I think we're in a good position now,” Eric said.

Products, platforms, and partnership

In addition to CFO Essentials, Shore Wealth Management finds value in other available resources and technology. “LPL’s been a very strategic partner,” said Eric. “One of the biggest values we get is in utilizing multiple platforms like GWP, MWP, SAM, Manager Select—and having the right investment solutions for each client we work with. Having access to these tools has really helped us grow our business.”

The Shore Wealth Management team also uses LPL’s Proposal Tool, Private Trust Company, Enhanced Trading platform, and WealthVision to offer the best financial planning options for their clients. “WealthVision has been great,” said Dean. “It has the tools to do something much more complex for some of our clients.”

Eric added, “Most of our relationships are multi-generational in nature and a lot of times we're managing everything from the grandparents’ all the way down to the grandchildren’s trust accounts or 529s. And tying that back to WealthVision, we share with our clients the capabilities of the software: you can upload your wills, your trust, power of attorney, healthcare, and property.”

The Shores also find value in the resources provided by the LPL Research team. Dean said, “The Weekly Market Commentary really gives us good talking points during client reviews, or when we're writing a blog or pushing out timely news. That's a huge resource for us.”

“Having the resources of a large organization, but still maintaining our independence, is what makes LPL the right fit for us,” said Eric.

Featured in this article

Eric Shore, Founder, AIF®
Dean Shore, CFP®, CIMA®
Lesley Shore

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