Staffing continues to be one of the main concerns facing family offices today. Whether it is a single family office with one staff member or a larger scale multi-family office, building the right team is the primary focus. In line with investment returns, family succession and estate planning, finding the best talent takes awareness of the market and defining goals of the organization. Recruiting top talent requires careful selections, a serious time commitment to talent management and development, as well as implementing creative incentives to attract and retain staff members.
The tax, finance and investment sectors offer a deep talent pool of seasoned professionals with a variety of skills. While upper level talent may be plucked from other industries, the management and development of talent across all levels continues to be a struggle. Succession plans for retiring staff, as well as contingency plans for unexpected staff vacancies, are also challenging.
Family offices provide privacy to their clients in many aspects of their lives. While this luxury comes at a premium, family offices have a responsibility to protect the family’s private information, just as they would with any of the family’s assets. We continue to see cybercrimes as a major challenge. The attacks can come in the form of a server or email breach, impersonation, and more commonly, attempts to complete a fraudulent wire or payment.
With family offices controlling or overseeing significant amounts of wealth and valuable information for their clients, they are likely to continue to be a primary target of hackers and thieves. While older generations of senior family members have common concerns about internet and the cloud, it is nearly impossible to conduct regular operation without them. The threat of cybercrimes continually evolves at a pace in which thieves almost immediately pivot to circumvent any new method of detection or protection. What security measures does your family office have in place? Providing peace of mind that the office is properly protected both outside and inside from threats should remain a priority at all times.
Keeping pace with technology for a family office changes as much as the markets do. With each challenge an office faces, there seems to be some technological solution. While technology can enhance the family office, it’s not without its’ own challenges and the practicality of implementation. The need for portfolio tracking, accounting and reporting continues to be crucial to meet the client’s expectations and informational needs when making critical decisions.
The constant need to review reporting systems, security, internal controls and the ever emerging growth of artificial intelligence, family offices must have a well written script to review changes so they do not risk falling behind for their clients in a competitive industry.