Business Process Analysis and Design Engagements

Trading Lifecycle Solution Definition

This engagement followed directly from Trading Lifecycle Solution Business Case. In this effort we led a team of internal client staff and consultants to develop a target business process model and investment systems architecture, and to select solutions, for a large national pension fund’s public markets trading lifecycle. We led this effort from its inception until the proof of concept, when we transitioned leadership to an internal client team.

Global Investment Guidelines Compliance System, Process, and Organization Implementation

Phase 1: Design, Functional Requirements Development, and Solution Selection

In this engagement we led an international team in developing the functional requirements and standard process model for an investment guidelines compliance system and organization, and selecting the application to serve as the core of the process. The scope of this work was global and included both pre- and post-trade compliance requirements. We conducted a structured RFP process that incorporated the requirements and process model, as well as technology and vendor background considerations. This engagement culminated with the selection of a third-party application, and led directly into the implementation phase, discussed below.

Phase 2: Implementation

This followed directly from the above project. We were engaged as the global program manager. The program involved simultaneous deployments of Fidessa LatentZero’s Sentinel application in Japan and Europe for post-trade compliance checking. The phases of the program included the extraction of investment rules from governing documents such as investment management agreements, prospectuses, and regulations; the development of data requirements for evaluating the rules; identifying the sources of data to populate the system; developing the data feeds; coding the rules into the system; deploying the application at multiple sites; staffing two regional teams and a central global center of excellence for the function; and testing the data feeds, system, and processes end to end. The system and process went live in Europe and Japan during Q4 of 2007.

This effort involved a global team across six locations, including a disparate mix of permanent, contract, and vendor personnel. Our role was direction and oversight of the complete program, including all aspects of program management: planning, staffing, budgeting, and tracking; reporting and stakeholder communication; risks and issues management; and vendor management.

Throughout both phases of this engagement, we brought capable, trusted leadership, judgment, and vision so that the senior executive sponsoring the project could focus her attention on projects experiencing difficulties or otherwise requiring her guidance.

Quantitative Equity Application Analysis

An investment team found itself operating on four separate platforms for optimization and trade order generation for quantitative equity strategies. We were engaged to survey and document their applications, databases, and flows, and to make recommendations about reducing risk and duplication. We produced a set of detailed diagrams, accompanied by a sortable, filterable database, of all the components, and a report summarizing our recommendations. This team has since embarked on replacing this fractured set of portfolio management tools with a new, strategic platform, and our documentation continues to be a key reference for the technical team developing the new system.

This engagement led directly into Quantitative Equity Portfolio Management System Functional Requirements and Operating Model.


Quantitative Equity Portfolio Management System Functional Requirements and Operating Model

This project followed directly from the application duplication and risk analysis above. The quantitative equity investment team decided to replace the multiple legacy portfolio management platforms with a new strategic system, and engaged us to develop functional requirements to aid in the RFP process and the buy-versus-build decision. These were developed as a single, globally consistent set of requirements, incorporating and standardizing the principles of all in-scope locations.

The investment team subsequently decided to build its own in-house system, using our functional requirements as a base. We were retained to lead the development of the operating model and use cases for the new system. We used this opportunity to similarly converge the multiple legacy operating models in the various regions, which was a primary goal of our client.

This engagement was preceded by Quantitative Equity Application Duplication and Risk Analysis.


Fund of Hedge Funds Shared Data Strategy

A major provider of funds of hedge funds engaged us (via Cutter Associates in Europe) to help define a strategy and architecture for the sharing of data globally. We collaborated with the company’s chief technology architect and main business stakeholders to design an achievable strategy and plot key milestones for its adoption.


Hedge Fund Process and Data Management Analysis

In this engagement we combined with another consultant to advise an investment management firm on developing its fast-growing quantitative strategies in a scalable manner. Acting as a “consultant’s consultant,” we reviewed the background materials and findings from onsite information gathering, and helped to target and fine-tune the recommendations and deliverable to the end client.


Human Resources Data Analysis

In this project the client was embarking on replacing a set of interlinked legacy HR-related applications with a PeopleSoft-based ASP solution. We were engaged to analyze and document the current state of the applications and data flows to enable the development of an operating model for the new system.

Retirement Tool Selection

A large U.S. mutual fund complex wanted to adopt a set of retirement income tools for use by investment advisors. We helped them build their business case, define the functional components, decide on a buy versus build approach, and create a high-level timeline for implementation.