Model Wealth Manager

Introduction to the Model Wealth Manager Awards

The Model Wealth Manager Awards recognize a financial institution’s effective use of technology in specific areas. Model Wealth Manager case studies demonstrate how wealth managers improve performance and meet market demand.

The vision for Celent’s Model Wealth Manager is to answer the deceptively simple question:

“What would it look like for a wealth manager to do everything right with today’s technology at their disposal?”

Our approach is to seek examples of best practices in technology usage in different areas critical to success in wealth management. We invite financial institutions to nominate their technology initiatives across the following categories:

Technology tools to reach new markets and client segments

Technologies that enable the democratization of wealth management continue to emerge across the industry.  Wealth-as-a-Service platforms, digital tools and mobile applications are examples of technologies used to deliver financial solutions to underinvested communities and new markets such as gig workers.  This is a growing area of interest to wealth management firms looking for new sources of revenue.


Wealth management firms are looking to personalize the client journey.  This category includes innovative technologies that are used to deliver more meaningful advisor/client engagement, communications, and portfolio solutions.

Streamlining Advisor Workflows

Digitizing and streamlining operations across the advisor workflow continues to be an area of focus for financial institutions.  Innovative point solutions, front, middle and back-office technologies that improve advisor efficiency and productivity are essential to the creation of best-in-class platforms.

Financial Wellness

This theme includes technologies that deliver more holistic solutions to clients. Retail clients are demanding that wealth managers seamlessly integrate non-traditional products and services, such as alternative investments, insurance and lending into comprehensive solutions.  Technologies and tools that enable these solutions are increasingly leveraged by financial institutions.  

Data and Analytics

Data is a differentiator for wealth managers.  This theme recognizes the use of data in driving competitive advantage.  Some examples include using data management tools and technologies to deliver:

  • Predictive analytics
  • Curated content 
  • More meaningful advisor engagement
  • ESG and thematic financial solutions
  • Data management capabilities that enable the flow of information across systems

Essential and Emerging Technologies

This category looks at new technologies that are just beginning to emerge within wealth management.  The Metaverse is a good example of a technology that financial institutions are exploring. 

Model Wealth Manager award presents a number of PR opportunities for the winning firm. Celent announces all the winners publicly, with associated social promotion. Winners can also issue their own press release announcing their award and highlighting why they were recognized as a Model Wealth Manager winner.

Furthermore, Celent analysts will write detailed case studies of each winning initiative. These case studies will be included in Celent’s Model Wealth Manager reports, thereby generating further exposure for the winning firms and their initiatives.


Eligibility to Apply

The awards are available to wealth managers, globally. Any firm can apply, irrespective of whether it has any prior relationship with Celent. Celent does not charge any fees to firms or vendors to participate in the Model Wealth Manager process.

Any IT related initiative, regardless of the date when it was executed, is eligible for a Model Wealth Manager award. The initiative must be in production at the financial institution, though we consider some exceptions which can be found in the “Judging Criteria and Evaluation Process” section.

We seek initiatives that can demonstrate a very clear impact on customers, i.e. how the initiatives can help the wealth manager provide their customers a better product or service experience, make them feel more secure, opened a new market for the wealth manager or accomplished all of the above more efficiently while better managing risk.

For initiatives that rely on technology vendor solutions and expertise, the award often leads to an even stronger relationship between the winning firm and its vendor(s). While not explicitly awarding vendors, Celent recognizes their contribution to the initiative. In response, vendors often issue their own PR statements celebrating achievements of their clients.

In that context, vendors may help firms to submit the nomination form, but the entire process belongs to the firm.

Application Process

Nominations for our 2023 program open June 27, 2022 and close October 14, 2022.

Winners will be announced at Celent’s Innovation and Insight Week.

Yes, absolutely, we encourage you to submit all the initiatives that you are proud of.

If the improvements relate to the same solution (e.g. different functionalities to your digital platform), we would recommend submitting a single application and highlighting them as key features why you believe your platform merits an award. We expect competition to be fierce, and by fragmenting your platform functionality into discrete components, you run the risk that none of them individually will be strong enough to win. Remember, it’s about quality, not quantity.

Yes, please upload the material to the Additional Material section of the nomination form.

We will send an email confirmation to the manager and, if applicable, vendor contacts listed on the submission. If you haven’t heard from us within a few days of your submission, please contact us at


Protecting the confidentiality of the firms with whom we have a relationship is an obligation we take extremely seriously.

We may use anonymized data from any submission for research purposes. We will not, however, publish or disclose any information about the nomination that could be directly attributed to you. We will ask your permission before mentioning your company by name in the context of your Model Wealth Manager submission.

If your nomination wins an award, we will work with you to publish a case study of your initiative. Your firm will be mentioned by name, and we will publish the case study only after you have reviewed it in a timely fashion and given your approval. Once published, we may refer to the case study again in other publications as an example of good practice. Please refer to the section “WHAT HAPPENS IF WE WIN A MODEL WEALTH MANAGER AWARD?” for more details on this.

No, we will never disclose the fact that you submitted a Model Wealth Manager nomination, unless we recognize you as a Model Wealth Manager award winner. In the event that we wish to refer to your nomination in another context, we will contact you to obtain permission before doing so.

Judging Criteria and Evaluation Process

We will judge the initiatives on three criteria:

Measurable business benefits

We seek to recognize initiatives that have a clear and sustainable impact on the business — those that most clearly advance your firm’s business objectives. Therefore, this category is weighted most heavily. Project size and scope matter, and we will pay particular attention to quantitative success measures.

Degree of innovation

This measure draws attention to initiatives deemed particularly innovative for their use of technology in improving sales or service results, reducing risks or costs, or improving business processes.

Technology or implementation excellence

We will use nine different key IT best practice criteria to evaluate the nominations. Each best practice is considered important to the success of a technology project. Initiatives are evaluated for their IT/business coordination, expansion and effective use of distribution channels, and implementation and integration excellence, to name a few. We will recognize initiatives that effectively demonstrate the use of best practices throughout the initiative.

No. We will not give preference to clients in the selection process and will ensure that we were not directly involved in the creation or deployment of any of the initiatives that will be recognized. To do otherwise would mean compromising Celent’s values and risking our reputation we have taken such great care to build.

Naturally, the main factor determining a nomination’s success is the strength of your own initiative. Remember, we will only award “live” initiatives which are already delivering business benefits, although we will also accept advanced stage pilots, as long as they have measurable results.

  • Focus on essential points, but don’t skimp on detail. It is surprising how many entries suffer from lack of clarity. Please do not expect us to understand internal acronyms or team names. Your initiative might be brilliant, but if we can’t understand it, you won’t win. Clarity of your submission is crucial!
  • If applicable, don’t hesitate to involve the vendor when submitting your nomination form; however, make sure that you (the manager) are actively engaged in and own the Model Wealth Manager process.
  • The final success factor is the strength of competition. As with all the awards, it’s all relative, and Celent appreciates that it’s not something you can do much about. It can be the case that we have many entries in one theme category and yet be starved of quality entries in others.


Nominations for our 2023 program open June 27, 2022 and close October 14, 2022.

Winners will be announced at Celent’s Innovation and Insight Week.

We expect to notify the award winners by November 2022. We will send an email to the individuals with contact details on the submission form. If there is a vendor involved and contact details are available, we will copy the vendor as well.

We will also email all nominees who did not win the award, typically a couple of days after we communicate results to the winners.


Privileges and Responsibilities of Model Wealth Manager Award Winners

Winning the Model Wealth Manager award gives the institution a number of privileges. A case study featuring the award-winning initiative included in the Model Wealth Manager series, available to all Celent research subscription clients.

Celent will ask all Model Wealth Manager award winners to:

Support Celent in writing the case study about your initiative.Send at least one senior representative familiar with the initiative to the award ceremony to discuss the initiative and accept the award.

Yes, we will ask all Model Wealth Manager award winners to observe the following timelines:"

Acknowledge within 24 hours the receipt of our email informing that your initiative won the award. Unless you inform us otherwise, this acknowledgment will confirm that you are happy to accept the award and oblige with the winner’s responsibilities.Identify relevant executive(s) for case study interview(s) within one week of the original email.Confirm the executive that will accept the award.Approve the case study for publishing – as early as possible, but no later than two weeks prior to the awards ceremony.

Case Study Support

A Celent analyst will be responsible for writing the case study. The analyst will be identified and introduced to you via email informing that your initiative has won the award. He or she should be your first port of call for any additional questions you might have about the Model Wealth Manager program. Of course, if you are an existing client, your account manager will continue to serve as the primary point of contact at Celent.

The information you will have supplied in the application form will serve as a great starting point for the case study. In addition, we ask all award winners to support us by:

Helping us arrange one or more interviews with relevant FI executives familiar with the initiative to get more details.Supplying any available visuals (e.g. screenshots, charts, etc.) helpful to illustrate features and benefits of the solution.Reviewing the draft and managing any necessary internal approvals to allow us to publish the case study in the report.

The whole process should not take much more than a couple of hours of your time.

The case study is typically 3-6 pages long and covers the following topics:


Brief description of the company, usually from corporate literature.
Brief synopsis of the award winning initiative.


Pain points or business opportunity – why did you launch this initiative?
Market and competition, or anything else relevant to understanding the case study.


What was built/ developed?
How? Over what period?
Who was involved?
What is unique about the solution/ initiative?
What were the biggest challenges?

Results and Lessons Learned

Quantitative and qualitative information of what the company achieved because of the initiative.
What are the future plans – e.g. geographic expansion, new functionality?
What were the most critical success factors that made this initiative successful?

The interview questions would broadly follow this outline.

While the analyst is “putting pen to paper”, you are always in control over what specific information you share, and you decide what should be included in the case study. We are not asking to disclose anything that’s confidential and would not publish anything before your explicit approval.

We expect to publish the Model Wealth Manager reports during Innovation and Insight Week.

Yes, if you are a Celent research subscription client, you will be able to access all Model Wealth Manager reports just like any other Celent report. If you are not a client, we can share the report featuring your case study upon request.

Yes, you can view an example case study from Celent’s Model Wealth Manager Awards here


Celent will publicly announce all Model Wealth Manager award winners during the award ceremony. The reports featuring the case studies will be published shortly thereafter.

Yes, Celent supports and encourages the Model Wealth Manager award winners to issue a press release announcing this achievement. However, in order to ensure accuracy and consistent messaging across all of our winners, we ask that each company wishing to issue a release send it to Celent’s PR team at for review and approval.

We ask that you keep the news under embargo until we publicly announce all Model Wealth Manager award winners. If you want to issue your own press release, we recommend doing so on the day following the award ceremony.

Yes, but you must purchase redistribution rights from Celent first. Please contact your Celent account manager or write to

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