One of the top wirehouse players in the US is changing how it compensates advisors at a time when competitive pressures in the sector remain intense.
UBS has revamped how it compensates advisors in order to simplify operations and give more reward to teamwork, this news service can confirm.
The new plan “directly aligns with our focus on high net worth and ultra-high net worth clients, and also is the most supportive plan for teams,” Jason Chandler, the head of Wealth Management USA at UBS, was quoted as saying by Barron’s. “We really do believe that this will become an industry-leading financial advisor compensation plan.”
The updated comp plan covers two factors: advisors’ trailing 12-month revenue production and their length of service at UBS. Under the structure, an advisor who has been at UBS for at least 20 years and produces $10 million annually will earn a 60 per cent payout, for example. Length of service is calculated in real time, Chandler noted: Advisors are eligible starting the month after their service anniversary for higher incentive rates, the report said.
Over the years, wirehouse advisors have bemoaned complex compensation formulas. UBS’s approach means that advisors “don’t have to do any calculations beyond how long they’ve been at UBS and how much revenue they produce,” Chandler said. “They don’t have to worry about conflicts, or targets or number of accounts.”
The Swiss banking group confirmed details of the article to Family Wealth Report when questioned about the matter. The story underscores how there is still a strong battle for talent in the North American financial services and wealth sectors.
The report noted that more than half of UBS’s advisors - numbering 6,266 at the end of the third quarter - will experience an overall rate increase as a result of the updated grid.
UBS is also rolling out the “aligned team member” structure, under which advisors who share 20 per cent of their assets and revenues with all members of the team can receive the incentive grid rate of the highest producer in the team, the report said.