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How we developed the best data model to offer a 360° wealth overview

Stefanie Keymeulen
October 24, 2022

Charlotte Malysse joined our product team in 2019. With a law and notarial master to her credit and working experience as a legal expert, she brought with her exactly the knowledge we needed at Abbove. Very quickly, she transformed into one of the builders of the unique data model of our platform in which wealth data is collected and structured, as well as of the tax calculation tools the model is linked to.

"Abbove is developing a wealth planning platform that helps financial advisors offer holistic wealth advice to their clients." If you keep an eye on our communications, you have undoubtedly seen this phrase pass by before. In other words, we want our platform to help advisors provide the best possible assistance to their clients in all aspects of their wealth management. And, of course, that all starts with a complete, structured database - without an accurate overview of a client's assets, providing appropriate and effective advice is an impossible task. Or, again in other words, a good data model is indispensable for good advice.

That Abbove is today able to structure and organize wealth data from different European countries in a standardized model is largely thanks to our product owner Charlotte. Together with her colleagues, she makes it possible to represent complex wealth data in a simple interface, without letting any detail of interest go lost.

A multidimensional and international model

But the strength of our wealth database goes far beyond that.

"Firstly, our data model is multidimensional. That means we make it possible to collect all the data on our platform that can have an impact on a family's wealth, from civil information to pure asset data. Concretely, you can map entire family relationships, create an inventory of all gifts that have happened within the family, as well as indicate ownership, valuation and structuring for all assets and liabilities. All this ensures that families and their advisors both get a global overview of their assets, but can also easily find all the details," Charlotte explains.

In addition, our platform and data model can also be used internationally. Not an obvious matter with the rules and legislation that differ greatly from country to country. Charlotte succeeded in developing the data inventories in such a way that advisors can use them in exactly the same way for families from different European countries, while they can also take into account the country-specificities.

Last but certainly not least, our data model is collaborative and connected. Both advisors and their clients can manage their wealth data and keep it up-to-date. In addition, they can connect our platform to other data systems in various ways. All this ensures that it’s possible to collect and structure a maximum of data in the same place.

Both input and output

The purpose of our data inventories is not only to organize data, they also feed tax calculation tools that help advisors provide sound advice, such as a financial planning tool and inheritance tax calculator. In other words, the data that families and their advisors collect and enter into the inventories also produce a direct output.

"As an added value, our data model is directly connected to a financial planning tool and inheritance tax simulator. It’s important to say that we did not develop those tools entirely based on our data inventories; it's actually the other way around. As we developed the tools and converted rules and legislation into formulas, we gained an even deeper understanding of the data needed to perform such calculations correctly. As a result, we expanded our inventories and the data that can be stored in them even further."

The basis of it all

As we already mentioned in this article, a complete, correct and structured database is the basis of everything. And that may be taken quite literally in the case of our platform. Indeed, developing data inventories to give families a good overview of their wealth was once our first goal and even the start of our technology.

"The beginning of our data model was also the beginning of our platform. Five years ago, a hundred or so families told us about their problems in wealth management, and based on their experiences, we developed our data inventories. So, unlike many of our competitors, our data model is initially based on the needs of end users and only then supplemented by those of advisors," Charlotte explains. "It is thanks to that initial focus on end users, the continuous feedback from our professional clients and the legal and tax knowledge of our team that we manage to develop a simple, but complete and correct standardized data model."

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