A dozen technology vendors that are integrating with TD Ameritrade’s clearing system for RIAs are invited to Dallas next week to talk about the custodian’s plans.
Jon Patullo, director of Technology Product Management at TDAI, says the meeting will allow the custodian to get feedback and also update the vendors on TDAI’s integration initiative.
“We’ll review where we’re at and what’s coming in the future,” says Patullo. “We’ll talk about our road map for opening up new sections of the API, including key workflows for account opening, setting up client meetings, and updating address changes across different systems. We hope our effort can help shape the future of our technology and advisor technology as well.”
In December 2010, TDAI released an application programming interface (API) for its custodial services, giving access of TDAI’s back-office data to technology vendors supporting RIAs. TDAI thus became the first of the four major custodial firms to open access to its custodial system to tech vendors by using an API.
The TDAI API instructs vendors about how to access data in TDAI’s custody platform and stream them securely into their apps. The API tells vendors the requests their programs must make to retrieve data about accounts held at TDAI. For example, the API specifies how to call a list of securities holdings, balances, and transactions at TDAI. So a CRM, client vault, or other advisor application can display that data in its system.
Essentially, opening its API allows TDAI to create an app store featuring apps integrated with its brokerage system.
Tech vendors have been scrambling to integrate TDAI and Patullo says 10 or 12 integrations will be rolled out in the next two to four months.
“We’re looking for feedback,” says Patullo. “We’ve done good work but there is always an opportunity to be better and do things differently.” Patullo says the vendor summit last year helped shape the direction for creating the test environment now being used by vendors.
Patullo says security issues have delayed introducing the integrations. “The security issues have taken longer than we expected,” he says. Vendors are now beginning to open their source to scans by TDAI that will ensure their apps are not vulnerable to hackers. Such scans will be conducted at least annually, he says.
Patullo says the following vendors are expected to attend the meeting: