No two trust services companies are alike. Nor are all trust companies appropriate for every client’s needs and preferences. Like any other successful business relationship, the trust services industry’s most enduring client-provider relationships are built on mutual interest, respect, and competency.
When seeking a new partner for your firm’s trust services needs, look for providers that exhibit these six key attributes.
1. On-Demand Access to Senior Staff
Seek out trust services firms that make senior staff available outside of regular business hours. While it is certainly important to respect the privacy and personal space of your trust services partners, sometimes there are matters that cannot wait. Indeed, clients with business interests in different parts of the world may need to communicate with financial services partners throughout the 24-hour day, even absent a serious emergency.
2. Extensive International Experience
International insight is likewise a boon for clients with geographically dispersed interests. If you have assets in multiple international jurisdictions or plan to in the future, look to international trust services firms like Asia Pacific-based Asiaciti Trust. Like its global peers, Asiaciti Trust has a presence in several jurisdictions—in its case, Singapore, Hong Kong, New Zealand, the Cook Islands, and others.
3. Commitment to Long-Term Client Relationships
Look for trust services partners willing and able to pursue long-term relationships with their clients. While a transaction-based approach to business may be adequate for one-off projects, it is unlikely to benefit either party over the long term.
4. Institutional Knowledge
Seasoned trust services firms understand the importance of preserving institutional knowledge within their organisations. When evaluating potential partners, perform thorough due diligence on senior staff, paying special attention to length of service, speciality, track record, and like attributes. The greater the combined knowledge of a trust services firm’s principals, the likelier that firm is to serve its clients’ best interests.
5. Rigorous Internal Processes and Procedures
Even if they are not readily apparent to outsiders, internal processes and procedures matter. When evaluating prospective trust services partners, look for indications of internal discipline and systematisation. Process-oriented firms tend to manage risk better than those without such grounding, and may be better positioned to respond to changing client needs or circumstances.
6. Specialisation That Aligns With Your Needs
Look for trust services providers whose specialities align with your needs—and whose records demonstrate proficiency in serving those needs. Providers like Philadelphia based investment management firm, Vanguard are to be commended for their broad-based services portfolio, which enables them to serve clients in a wide range of circumstances. However, as a general rule, clients with complex or bespoke needs would do well to work with firms whose competencies are more specialised.
Find the Right Trust Services Company for Your Needs
More than one trust services company is likely to meet these six requirements to your satisfaction. As you narrow down your choices and settle on the firm that you feel is best positioned to handle your trust services needs, you will need to apply additional tests and filters. Ultimately, the firm you choose must leave you feeling confident in its ability to address your needs today, tomorrow, and for years to come.