Data has historically been considered as simply a by-product of business systems. At financial institutions and at global banks in particular, the approach to data, and especially reference data, has largely been on how to make it work, but not necessarily on how to make it right.
Reference data, whether it’s legal entity data, instrument data, pricing, corporate actions or standing settlement instructions (SSIs), has become mission-critical for banks. It underpins almost any process or activity in the core areas of accounting, trading and risk management. It is also essential for auditing and reporting, as well as ensuring compliance and transparency.
Challenges including intersystem connectivity, outdated distribution methods and a diversity of product reference data sets, make it extremely difficult for banks to optimize their reference data without adequate data management software.
This is why a growing number of banks are looking to centralize the management of their reference data eliminating organizational and technological silos to realize seamless integration of reference data.
However, a high proportion of data management initiatives can fail because banks have underestimated the scale and complexity of the challenge and adopt a technology-led approach as opposed to addressing the program as a business-led initiative. Without the buy-in of key sponsors across the breadth of the institution, a sub-optimal outcome is inevitable.
With 25 years’ experience on the banking frontline, Asset Control’s Managing Director for Global Markets, Paolo Mittiga, will be writing a series of blogs examining in detail the seven critical steps to optimizing a reference data management change project:
1. Engage business, prove the business case and use specialized resources
2. Establish data governance with clear responsibilities and accountabilities
3. Create vision, ensure it is socialized and sold to the business and data governance
4. Establish team, clear accountabilities and define the program office
5. Create architecture, decide buy vs. build and create roadmap
6. Establish a clear partnership with vendor
7. Ensure execution
These steps are based on Paolo’s real-world experiences in successfully delivering firm-wide data management initiatives at global banks. He has learnt firsthand the success that sticking to them can bring.
Paolo will therefore provide a practical guide to optimising a data management delivery based on these ‘seven data wins’ and demonstrate how large banks can improve data quality, service levels and technology management.