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Helping public companies and their suppliers deliver better and more cost-effective programs since 1994

Wells Fargo Shareowner Services

An Interview With Todd May SVP, Wells Fargo Shareowner Services

Congratulations on leading both industry surveys this year. Can you share some detail around them?

Yes, this year we received the highest ratings in both Group 5’s annual survey and Stockholder Consulting Services’ among large agents. This is the 15th year of the past 16 that we’ve led one or both studies. Among large agents, we’ve won Stockholder Consulting Services’ TALON Award for 8 of the past 10 years and have also been awarded with the highest rating 4 years in a row in Group 5’s survey.

The team is proud of these ratings because they’re based on feedback from our clients. We work hard to deliver expertly for our clients and their shareowners. It is tremendously rewarding to see how much this is valued by those we serve.”

How do you keep your service commitments?

To put it simply, service is just the Wells Fargo way. Wells Fargo’s vision is, We want to satisfy all our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially. In other words, it’s about building lifelong relationships one customer at a time.

We ensure this model remains top of mind with our team. Earlier this year we rolled out a new mission within Shareowner Services to ensure we are all working toward a common goal.

The goal is striving to be the best – not the biggest – and building strong relationships over time. Longstanding relationships are the norm here. This model has served us well. Our fi two clients joined us more than 80 years ago and are still clients today.

You mentioned a new mission and vision, what can you tell us about that?

This was developed by a group of team members to help each team member understand the purpose behind what they do and the importance of always striving to be excellent.

Vision: To be viewed by our clients, prospects, and the WellsFargo community as the premier shareownerservicing agent in the industry.

Mission: At Wells Fargo Shareowner Services, we contribute to our clients’ financial success and help them achieve their goals. We do this by providing guidance, acting as the face to our clients’ shareowners, and building shareowner engagement. We provide our team members with opportunities for professional growth and development and reward individuals for premier performance. We achieve all of this while operating within the rules  and  regulations  that  guide  our  business, leveraging the diverse talent and knowledge of our team members, and delivering appropriate returns to Wells Fargo shareowners.

how does your team retain clients and grow your business?

As I shared earlier, we’re a service organization. Our relationship managers develop very strong client relationships andclientstrust our teamto be knowledgeable, responsive, and to deliver as promised.

Our clients see the value we provide. In Group 5’s recent study, issuers rated us best among large agents in the fairness of fees we charge to both issuers and shareowners. We may not be the cheapest, but our clients understand that our commitment to service and the resources we provide deliver a value unparalleled in the industry.

That’s not only how we keep clients, but how we continue to grow our business. Issuers appreciate our service and the resources of the Wells Fargo enterprise. This is a small industry and word travels. We enjoy the reputation we’ve earned as a strong provider and appreciate our clients’ willingness to share their experiences.

What are the biggest concerns among your issuers today? how is your team meeting them?

Regulatory changes continue to concern our issuers. And, that makes sense, FATCA, Cost Basis, and Escheatment are just a few of the many areas that continue to impact industry participants.

Wells Fargo is highly involved with all aspects of regulatory reform. As one of the world’s largest financial institutions we have significant involvement across countless industries and direct contact with many governing entities. Teams of people keep us well-prepared for these changes, and they help us keep clients and shareowners informed on the ways in which they may be affected.

What is your team doing to help encourage  shareowner  engagement?

We know that shareowner satisfaction is linked to being able to submit transactions anywhere and at any time. Many of our recent activities have been centered on increasing shareowner engagement and educating shareowners about the many benefits of using Shareowner Online.

Online adoption continues to rise and the additional sales features we introduced have gained popularity. Year to date, the new market order option has been chosen on nearly 70 percent of online transactions. The key to both of these activities is giving clients and shareowners choices.

We’re also improving our telephone service by upgrading to a new IVR in 2014 that will offer a more dynamic and, friendly shareowner interface. In addition to our online and phone improvements, we’ve modified our written correspondence to be more easily understood by your shareowners.

What does being part of Wells Fargo mean to your clients and team members?

The bank has its footprint on virtually every aspect of our business. Wells Fargo’s scale and commitment to service allow our clients to benefit from so many areas. They include bank controls, balancing, regulatory involvement, phone and print center excellence, and so much more.

Clients and shareowners alike may also already work with Wells Fargo. As a relationship business, we’re committed to knowing our customers and understanding and meeting their needs.

Our team benefits from working within a great organization. Wells Fargo is highly committed to diversity, equality, and community support. Wells Fargo promotes economic development and self-sufficiency through community development, financial education, cash contributions, affordable housing, environmental stewardship, and through the efforts of team member volunteers. In 2012, Wells Fargo invested $315.8 million in 19,500 nonprofits nationwide. In 2012, for the fourth year in a row, United Way Worldwide named Wells Fargo’s annual Community Support and United Way Campaign the No. 1 Giving Campaign. 

What has 2013 brought to your business?

We’ve continued to invest in the client and shareowner experience. To maintain our best-in-class delivery, we are committed to continually improving and routinely implement changes based on feedback from clients and shareowners alike. These have ranged from large-scale efforts such as new sales capabilities to small nuances, but each one focuses on improving the end-user experience.

What will 2014 bring for Wells Fargo Shareowner Services?

We have many efforts underway for 2014 implementation. One of the largest is the new IVR we discussed earlier. While the IVR will be a significant investment, shareowners will still have the ability to opt out to speak with a representative. Shareowners are important to us and we will continue to serve them how they wish to be served.

We are always looking for new ways in which we can improve. We value the feedback we receive from clients and shareowners alike so we can continue to realize our vision: To be viewed by our clients, prospects, and the Wells Fargo community as the premier shareowner servicing agent in the industry.

About Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo Shareowner Services, a division of Wells Fargo, is dedicated to serving its issuer clients and their nearly nine million shareowners. Clients have awarded Wells Fargo Shareowner Services with the industry’s highest overall satisfaction ratings for 7 years in a row, and 14 of the past 15.