AssetMark Sustains Collaboration In a Virtual World Using Allego
AssetMark is a turnkey asset management platform for financial advisors that are specifically tailored to help investors achieve their life goals. Since it’s founding 25 years ago, AssetMark has fostered a collaborative culture that encourages employees to engage in peer-to-peer learning, coaching and other professional development activities. With the arrival of the pandemic, one of the company’s greatest challenges, aside from physically moving the workforce to a remote environment, was finding new and creative ways to sustain that culture.
“When we were in the office, you’d overhear sales conversations and phone calls, and we’d be able to learn from each other, swing by people’s desks, ask questions, etc.,” said Elyssa Douglass, Sales Training Specialist at AssetMark. “So to compensate for not having that in the remote world, we leveraged our technology—using Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and (of course) Allego.”
Creating a Knowledge and Information Hub
Although AssetMark had adopted Allego’s Sales Learning and Enablement platform only four months before the pandemic, Douglass immediately positioned the platform as the firm’s “knowledge and information hub.” She also deployed it as the go-to communications medium for new product announcements, news and updates regarding current initiatives.
In addition, Douglass used Allego to roll out a gamified form of learning reinforcement. “We’ve been using Allego to roll out what we’re calling the ‘daily challenge.’ Each month, we pick a new topic and highlight it using AI flashcards in Allego. The flashcards are pushed out on a daily basis to sales employees, so they’re able to engage with the platform in a simple and easy way. They’re not only reviewing information but also having fun
with it. At the end of each quarter, we pick the top three salespeople who completed the most flashcards, and give them a gift card, as well as bragging rights.”
To ensure that employees maintain a sense of ownership over their professional growth and development, Douglass created a private channel in Allego for each employee. This enables them to monitor and document their learning and performance progress.
“It’s a virtual portfolio of all of their work, including pitches they’re creating, call reviews that they’re doing with their manager, and self-evaluations. This hub allows them to see their progress over time. Then, once hiring opportunities and promotional opportunities become available, they’re able to share this virtual portfolio with hiring managers to be able to differentiate themselves from other candidates.”
Overcoming Virtual Onboarding Challenges
In the absence of in-person classroom sessions, the biggest change to the company’s new-hire onboarding program has not been the type of content delivered, but the mechanisms used to deliver it. Today, the formal program is two weeks long, and it combines self-study in Allego, in-person Zoom sessions with a trainer, and virtual shadowing opportunities. On a typical day, a new employee will start by watching a video in Allego, and then take a quiz to make sure that they’ve grasped the most relevant information.
“Then we’ll meet via Zoom to talk through any questions that came up or anything that the other trainers and I are able to clarify. We then role-play based on that specific topic—different sales scenarios that they’re going to be able to see. So we’re taking that knowledge and information and then applying it in our real-world scenario. And those Zoom meetings are recorded. I take them and cut them down to size, and they’re saved in that individual employee’s [Allego] channel.
“So from the first day that they start with AssetMark, we’re starting that virtual portfolio for them. Managers can easily log in and check on their progress, see how they’re doing in onboarding, and how they’re performing.”
At a critical time, AssetMark met the challenges of a rapidly changing market and a remote workforce. By extending its use of Allego, the company created a knowledge and information hub to fulfill the training and onboarding needs of its employees and preserve its collaborative culture—capabilities that will help the company thrive long after the pandemic has run its course.
"Sales employees are able to really get engaged with the platform in a really simple and easy way."
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