If you are like me, you have solicited multiple bids for a home improvement project where cost has often started out as the leading driver for selecting a contractor. However, as the project progresses you quickly realize there is more to a project than simply the price. As construction delays pile up, phone calls go unreturned and your frustration grows, buyer’s remorse may set in. While cost is important, there are other required attributes such as reliability, responsiveness, quality, creative solutioning, and meeting agreed upon deadlines when selecting the right partner. The same is true in selecting a custody and fund accounting business partner.
The multi-affiliate operating model is increasingly under review as asset managers seek synergies from their infrastructure to bolster their margins. Whether firms have intentionally structured a multi-affiliate business model or possibly find themselves running multiple platforms due to acquisitions, these redundant platforms are obvious targets to drive organizational agility while improving margins. Some of the initiatives intended to rationalize the models have been announced publicly and their stories highlight the need to have a clearly defined roadmap, buy-in across the impacted entities, and measurable goals defining success.
In a quest for differentiation, investment managers are now more than ever focusing on sales, marketing and client servicing functions in hopes of enhancing sales results and elevating their clients’ experience. To enable and empower the market facing personnel, internal positions like Head of Distribution Intelligence are becoming commonplace, while the technology spend on solutions across the client engagement spectrum is amped up.
Highlighted by the recent activity of acquisitions, service providers are investing significant resources in developing their capabilities to provide investment managers with an end-to-end platform to support their operating model. The goal being a comprehensive, integrated technology solution with a single version of the truth that can be leveraged to support a manager’s needs across the increasingly blurred lines of the front, middle, and back office. Assessing this evolving landscape is integral in establishing the operating model that will best support an investment manager’s growth strategies.
Since the original announcement in October 2016, there have been multiple releases updating changes to the dates for compliance as well additional clarifications regarding considerations for the implementation of N-PORT and the Liquidity Risk Management Program. Over the past year, Olmstead Associates has been working closely with our clients to fully understand, plan for, and implement support models for our clients’ compliance.
Stephen Alepa, leader of Olmstead's Client Experience and Engagement center of excellence, chaired the Client Reporting & Communications Forum at the TSAM Boston Conference. Topics included:
Client reporting has been a top priority across asset management, wealth management and insurance firms since 2013 and shows no signs of falling off the list. Our experience collaborating with our clients spans these industries and the software and service providers who deliver solutions. Regardless of industry, firm size or geography the following 10 lessons learned apply.
You've looked at your needs, looked at the vendor landscape and you're ready to pull the trigger. Before you do so, take a step back and consider the current and future organizational fit. The solution with the best functional capabilities is not necessarily the right choice for your business.
The focus on driving efficiency and speed into development processes is leading firms to flock towards Agile development processes. For firms that have historically operated using waterfall methodology the change is significant and requires much more than new tools and processes to ensure success. Olmstead's consultants have experiences across disparate process approaches and organizational cultures. We've seen the good, the bad and the ugly. Based on our experience there are some keys to successful organizational adoption of Agile.