Are you finding it time-consuming and increasingly difficult to maintain an efficient compliance process? Weak supervisory structures could leave your firm exposed. One solution that many firms consider is partnering with an Office of Supervisory Jurisdiction (OSJ).

An OSJ is a FINRA member firm that serves as a central hub for providing support services to independent financial professionals. For example, the OSJs play a crucial role in supervising a financial firm’s compliance, providing training, supervision, and ensuring financial advisors are in compliance.

But how do you determine if hiring an OSJ is the right move for you or your firm?

This blog, brought to you by Evolution Financial Advisors, will help you explore this decision through a series of questions designed to assess your firm’s current needs.

OSJ Question and Answer Quiz

1. Are you struggling with compliance demands?

  • Answer – “Yes, it can be a struggle.” If you’re overwhelmed by numerous compliance requirements, an OSJ might be a solution worth considering. The OSJ can help manage and streamline these processes, positioning your firm to adhere to all necessary regulatory requirements more efficiently. This can reduce the amount of work for your in-house team, allowing them to focus on other critical operations for your firm.

2. Do you have adequate supervisory structures in place?

  • Answer – “Not as much as we probably should.” Many firms, especially those in a rapid growth phase, may need more supervisory structures to ensure compliance. An OSJ provides comprehensive supervisory services, which can be crucial if your current structure is insufficient or your business is growing more rapidly. This support aims to maintain regulatory standards and can enhance the overall efficiency of your operations.

3. Is your firm experiencing rapid growth or considering a merger or acquisition?

  • Answer – “Yes, we are experiencing a relatively high organic growth rate.” Firm growth and rapid expansion come with increased regulatory scrutiny and the need for stronger oversight. The bottom line, you have more to lose if you don’t get it right. OSJs offer valuable support during these phases of your firm, providing the regulatory guidance and supervisory assistance required to navigate the complexities of scaling a business in a regulated industry. OSJs strive to ensure your firm remains in full compliance as it grows and evolves.

4. Do you need assistance with training and education for your staff on compliance matters?

  • Answer – “Yes, we would benefit from more assistance.” Keeping staff up-to-date on compliance requirements is essential for maintaining current and new regulatory standards. OSJs often provide tailored training programs and ongoing educational services, which can be highly beneficial if your firm lacks the resources or expertise to conduct these internally. This continuous education aims to empower and inform your staff about the latest compliance practices.

5. Do you want to reduce operational costs related to compliance and supervision?

  • Answer – “Yes, we’re always looking for ways to reduce our operating costs.” Managing compliance in-house can be resource-intensive and costly. By leveraging an OSJ, your firm could potentially reduce these operational expenses. OSJs are equipped to handle compliance and supervision tasks more efficiently, offering a superior solution for a fraction of the cost of an internal compliance team.

6. Do you feel confident in your current audit and risk assessment strategies?

  • Answer – “We could use more help.” Effective audit and risk assessment strategies are vital for identifying and minimizing potential issues before they escalate. If you have any doubts about your current capabilities, an OSJ could offer enhanced audit services and more robust risk assessment strategies. Their expertise may help you identify areas of concern early, positioning your firm to address them sooner. 

7. Is your firm quick to handle regulatory updates and changes?

  • Answer – “Not as quick as perhaps we should be.” The regulatory environment is continuously changing, and keeping up with these updates can be challenging. If your firm struggles with this aspect, an OSJ could provide the necessary expertise and real-time updates to ensure you are always in compliance. This support can be crucial in adapting to new regulations swiftly and efficiently.

8. Are you satisfied with your current level of control over compliance and supervisory issues?

  • Answer – “There’s always room for improvement.” If your current level of control over compliance and supervisory matters is lacking, an OSJ could offer a higher level of oversight. This enhanced control might improve your firm’s overall compliance posture and provide some reassurance that your firm is striving to meet all regulatory requirements as quickly and efficiently as possible.

How Did You Answer the 8 Questions? Should You Explore Partnering with an OSJ?

Your answers to these questions should give you a clearer picture of the ways partnering with an OSJ would benefit your firm.  AnOSJ can provide support, a supervisory structure, and training for all of your firm’s compliance needs, especially during periods of faster growth and change.

We believe evaluating your specific needs and challenges is crucial for making an informed decision. A consultation with an OSJ expert can provide personalized insights and recommendations when considering this type of partnership for your firm. The consultant can help you assess your current situation and determine the best path forward to enhance your compliance and supervisory responsibilities.

Think of the OSJ as a specialized partner who is responsible for all of the compliance details that regulate your firm. You can focus more time on acquiring new clients and serving current clients. 

Partner With Evolution Financial Advisors As Your OSJ

At Evolution, we aim to create a better experience for independent financial professionals. In fact, we built our firm around five core operating principles:

  • Independence: Our goal is to provide an optimized back-office experience for independent financial professionals like you.
  • Focus: We know you wear several hats in your day-to-day operations, so Evolution provides top-notch client services that reduce the number of hats. The more focused we both are, the more successful we will be.
  • White-glove service: We identified a major opportunity to offer superior services to independent financial professionals, including transition, technology, marketing support, reporting, and compliance.
  • Community: Shared experiences are one of the best ways to learn, grow, and improve your quality of life. Having a network that supports you and your team is an important component of our value proposition.
  • Best-in-class practices: We deploy best-in-class operational processes, including regulatory best practices, to support your financial advisory firm with timely and responsive services.

These five principles drive our firm as we work to help you maximize your own success. If you’re interested in exploring the benefits of partnering with an OSJ, we encourage you to reach out for an introductory consultation.

Our team at Evolution Financial Advisors is here to help you evaluate the ways an OSJ can benefit your firm’s operations.

Contact us today or call (585) 433-9124 to learn how we can support your firm’s growth and compliance needs.

Large Enterprise/OSJ
Chris Virgil

More about the author: Chris Virgil

Chris is the assistant vice president at Evolution Financial Advisors. He works to help advisors grow their businesses and gain a sense of freedom. Chris is a business and behavioral coach working with existing EFA financial professionals to create a more fulfilling practice, streamline operations, and enhance client experience.