Where to find the software's preferences
The software's preferences can be viewed and edited, if needed, by opening and client case and clicking the Preferences button, which is the cog top left.
On this screen are the System Preferences and Plan Preferences, which with one exception, the Application Preferences, mirror one another. How these two sets of preferences are used is explained following the inventory of preferences below.
NAE - National Average Earnings % (UK) - Income escalation for earnings, other incomes (i.e. rental income) and in the UK, state pension benefits.
On the Preferences screen, the Plan Preferences -- the list of panels to the right side of the screen -- are applied to the individual plans within the client case you are presently viewing. If you want to change a preference in the plan you are viewing, you would make this change in the panels in Plan Preferences, to the right side of the screen, and click Apply, bottom-right.
Preferences can even be tweaked on a per scenario (what-if plan) basis within a client case. For example, one could have a base plan with a default Inflation Rate of 2.5% and then create a scenario in which inflation is set (in Plan Preferences) to 3% and compare the two.
Like other items in the plan, child scenarios inherit preferences form the Base Plan unless they are changed specially in that scenario.
The System Preferences, to the left side of the screen, are used primarily as your template for new clients going forward. Whenever you create a new client case, a copy of the System Preferences to the left will be used as that client's Plan Preferences, at initially, until you make any changes to them.
Note: Nothing that you change or edit in the System Preferences will ever retroactively affect all of the client cases you have created to date. To update the preferences existing plans, you would need to open and edit each client case individually to make the appropriate changes in each client's Plan Preferences.
System Preferences are usually saved only locally for your user account, on the computer you use to access the software. If you install Voyant on another computer, you will probably need to set the System Preferences on that computer, if you've been customising them. There is an exception to this rule. Firms that subscribe to the Voyant rebranding (white labelling) service do have the option to add the firm's preferred set of system preferences included in their semi-bespoke version of Voyant Adviser. This service allows for updates to assumptions to be easily distributed to all of the advisers and paraplanners within the firm.
Plan Preferences are plan specific. Unlike System Preferences, they are integral to the client case and will follow the client case wherever it goes. So if a colleague opens your client case for John Smith, she or he will see the case bearing the set of preferences that you selected for it.
For example, the default Inflation Rate for all expenses in the plan could be set to 2.5% in the Plan Preferences. This means whenever I go to add a new expense to the plan, that expense will be set to inflate in the future at a rate of 2.5% per annum.
Any edits made at the item level will override the initial defaults from Plan Preferences. Moreover, once edited at the item level, these settings will remain as edited for the item, regardless of any later changes made in Preferences.
Should you ever need to revert a setting edited at the item level back to the plan default, simply clear the value -- e.g. delete the Inflation rate from the Expense screen's Inflation panel, leaving the field blank (null). Do not enter a 0. Click OK and then Update. The item will once again use the default value taken from Plan Preferences.
Managing Preferences in your firm's rebrand/white label of Voyant Adviser / AdviserGo
Firms may update the System Preferences used by their advisers and paraplanners, if they wish, provided they use our rebranding (white labeling) service.
System preferences can even be locked down in a rebrand. Also, when a user opens a case file, the client case specific Plan Preferences will be checked against the firm's latest master set of System Preferences. If the Plan Preferences deviate from the firm's master System Preferences, users will be alerted and will be asked whether they want to update the existing preferences in the current client case.
Preferences can be locked for firms using the rebranding service
A firm with a locked set of preferences, defined through their rebrand of Voyant, can ask us to update their preferences set.
1. The adviser will update their software either by visiting our website, signing in and clicking Plan Now or by waiting until our next formal release.
2. When they open an existing client case, the latest System Preferences, defined by the firm, will be checked against the Plan Preferences in the client case.
3. If a discrepancy is found, the adviser will be alerted and if they click Yes, the plan preferences in the client case will be updated to match the firm's latest set of system preferences.
4. Any new client cases created, going forward, will simply use the latest set of System Preferences as defined by the firm through their rebrand of Voyant.
Outputting Plan Preferences in printable reports
Information about the software's Plan Preferences can also be output in printable reports in PDF, Word and in most cases also Excel file formats.
Reports are found on the software's Reports & Notes screen. To generate a report, drag the sections you want to output form the left field to right, arrange them in any order, select the file formats you want the reports written in and click Generate lower-right.
The main report that relates to preferences is the Default Assumptions report. This report contain most of the client-facing values from the Plan Preferences that would be meaningful to your client. It is not intended to include all of the software's preferences. Rather, the report only features preferences that have an obvious bearing on your client's plan.
Other reports that include preference-related information are:
- Plan Overview, which includes the inflation rate on expenses and the growth rates on savings, investments, and pensions;
- Account Details, which includes the annual growth rate and in some cases the asset allocation for each savings, investment and pension account in the plan;
- Pension Details (UK), alludes to the escalation of the future lifetime allowance, which is shown in the report with each benefit crystallisation event;
- Taxes Detailed, shows the annual escalation of income tax brackets, if applicable, which is set in Plan Preferences.
The Adviser Fact Check report provides an output of all of the details of every item in the plan, but in a more technical format. Advisers and paraplanners are its intended audience, not clients.
Customised System Preferences (sample file) - UK and Ireland
Customised System Preferences (sample file) - US and Canada