Wells Fargo Advisors Shrinks Regional Management Structure
Wells Fargo Advisors has consolidated regions and realigned leadership of its combined bank-branch and freestanding Private Client Group offices in an effort to streamline decision-making for its 12,000 brokers and improve “client experience.”
In a memo sent to employees late Tuesday, branch network head John Alexander said its newly combined “Integrated Branch Network” will be managed by 14 regional presidents, a cut of seven regions. Wells combined its approximately 3,000 bank brokers and 9,000 traditional advisors into a single organization in August, and in January elevated Alexander to run the unit.
The reorganization aims to decrease bureaucracy.
The integration created “some pain points experienced by our front-line team members when they try to serve clients,” Alexander wrote. “In some cases, unintentional silos are slowing down decisions and leading to inconsistencies in the client experience.”
Alexander previously led one of Wells Fargo Advisors two sales division in the western U.S. Rich Getzoff, who led the eastern division, will directly oversee the 14 regional presidents, according to Alexander’s memo.
The leadership changes in the region primarily cut roles of managers from the bank-based unit that Wells had called Wealth Brokerage Services.
Twelve of the 14 regional presidents come from the Private Client Group, with Wealth Brokerage managers now in charge of only the Mountain Northwest and Northwest regions. (See list below.)
Wells Fargo Advisors will retain its “multi-channel” structure of advisors, managers and support teams in bank branches, traditional brokerage branches, private banking “hubs,” and independent broker contractor offices, Alexander wrote.
“We know that our multi-channel model is a competitive advantage for us,” he said, referring to the company’s ability to recruit advisors with different preferences.
Wells has been actively recruiting with enhanced pay packages in an effort to replace more than 1,200 brokers who have left since its parent bank company disclosed the creation of fake bank account and credit card scandals in September 2016.
Aligning the brokerage units under a common regional structure “will help eliminate layers in the decision-making process, enable decisions to be made faster and provide us with one way of doing things across our branch network,” Alexander wrote.
In addition to streamlining the regions of the integrated branch group, he has created three new regional president roles for the Private Wealth Financial Advisor Group, a subset of bank-brokerage group that services clients with over $5 million in assets. They report to Jim Hays, the former head of WBS who assumed the role of the Private Wealth group in January.
Regions and Presidents
Eastern – Steve Nash
Florida – Keith Vanderveen
Gateway – Andy Byer
International Private Client – Alberto Gonzalez Saint Geours
MidAtlantic – Bill Rogers
Midwest – Rob Samson
Mountain Northwest – Dan Barry*
New England– Frank Albanese
North – Mary Sumners
Northeast –Mike Carroll
Northwest – Mark Webster*
South –Joel Glasco
Southwest – Terry Chase
West –Open Position
Private Wealth Regional Presidents
Eastern – Steve McKenzie
West – Kevin Kitchin
Central – Nadia Adly