Investment Trends' 2011 Planning Software Report found planning applications focused on consolidating and improving functionality of existing applications, rather than developing innovative features in 2011, although the leaders in the market were among the most active in adding new features to their products.
IRESS' XPLAN has topped the software report for the fifth year in a row for overall planning functionality, scoring 89 per cent, ahead of Coin Office with 85 per cent and AdviserNETgain with 75 per cent.
"With the release of XPLAN 2, IRESS has produced an impressive advice platform that should support their strategy to take Australian-developed planning technology to international markets," said Ian Webster from the Investment Trends Advisory Board.
The report concluded that leading providers are the most active in enhancing their products with new features.
IRESS XPLAN 2's point-and-click interface and 'Advice Container' approach to codifying Best Interest compliance reflect the developer's innovation across most aspects of functionality, Investment Trends said.
COIN Office includes a new best practice SOA (statement of advice) template, an Open Platform Accounts module, improvements to TTR (transition to retirement), and debt recycling strategy reporting features.
AdviserNETgain successfully integrated with investment platform BT Wrap to rank first in that category.
According to Investment Trends, the Future of Financial Advice will lead to increased activity and deployment of new online and App planning applications by financial planners, retail and industry super fund member portals, and call-centre-based advice services, in 2012.