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Going Full Circle: Why Business Leaders Need a 360 View to Gain a Competitive Edge

Going Full Circle: Why Business Leaders Need a 360 View to Gain a Competitive Edge

This is a sponsored post by Ann Kuelzow, Global Head of Financial Services at InterSystems.

Amid ongoing disruption, sudden market changes, and unforeseen circumstances, the ability to leverage live data and gain a 360-degree view of the enterprise is vital for financial services firms to gain much-needed resilience and agility. However, for many organizations, a number of data-related issues currently stand in their way.

Research from InterSystems has found that the biggest data challenge firms are facing is delayed access to data. This is followed by not being able to get data from all the required sources, and not getting it in the format needed. Meanwhile, line of business professionals also cite a reliance on IT teams to analyze and turn data into actionable insights as a key frustration.

Getting to the root cause

The majority of these concerns are likely to stem from organizations having amassed overly complex data infrastructures that rely on a disjointed set of production applications and data management technologies. This has resulted in the creation of a large number of data and application silos which make it difficult to obtain information and insights in a timely manner, and in a way that is easy to interpret and share. This is evidenced by 98% of respondents reporting that there are data and application silos within their organization.

The impact is significant, hindering their ability to gain accurate and current visibility of their distributed data assets to further vital initiatives such as business 360, improving enterprise risk and liquidity management, and data-driven decision-making, for example. Furthermore, more than a third of line of business professionals say they are basing decisions on assumptions rather than real-time information. Meanwhile, an overwhelming 86% of global financial services institutions lack confidence in using their data to drive decision-making.

This has major implications for both financial services organizations and their customers and requires solutions that enable firms to gain access to consistent, accurate, real-time data to enable them to leverage live data and power their critical business initiatives. This is where new, modern approaches to data management, including smart data fabrics, are primed to help.

More diverse data, for better insights

The smart data fabric, a new architectural approach, provides an overarching and nondisruptive layer that connects and accesses information from source systems on demand. It accesses and harmonizes data from existing systems and silos inside and outside the organization, ensuring that the information is both current and accurate. Together, this helps to eliminate delays which lead to errors, missed opportunities, and decisions based on stale or incomplete data.

With so much data at their disposal, using a smart data fabric allows financial services firms to incorporate both real-time event and transactional data along with historical data. Doing so provides business users with self-service analytics capabilities, enabling line of business professionals to make “in the moment” decisions. By incorporating more data from more diverse sources, firms can obtain a more complete and comprehensive view of the business and more insightful analytics.

This approach also addresses limitations of previous approaches, such as data lakes, data warehouses, static reports, and dashboards, while allowing firms to maximize their previous technology investments, rather than needing to “rip and replace.”

Empowered by a 360-degree view

Together, the capabilities provided by a smart data fabric will help firms overcome the issues they have identified by giving them access to a consistent, accurate, real-time view of their enterprise data assets. This will enable them to gain better insights and leverage live data to drive decision making.

With a truly comprehensive 360-degree view of the enterprise, including trading activity, customers, regions, risk, capital, and assets under management, firms will be better placed to respond to growth opportunities, address challenges in an agile manner, and make more informed, accurate business decisions.

By obtaining near real-time visibility across various departments and regions, firms will be able to improve various aspects of the business, from their understanding of market risk and risk reporting, to cash flow and regulatory compliance. Additionally, they will not only be able to gain a complete, 360-degree of the business, but will also be able to establish a comprehensive view of customer and institutional client activity to fuel a wide range of initiatives.

Data as a competitive differentiator

As financial services firms look to address their data challenges, a smart data fabric approach will help to ensure their concerns around outdated, inconsistent, and inaccurate data become a thing of the past. It will also help to restore confidence in using data to drive decision making and arm them with the critical insights needed to retain, support, and grow their client base, gain better visibility for risk management, and adapt to changes and disruptive events in the moment.

Amid ongoing disruption, sudden market changes, and unforeseen circumstances, this 360-degree view of the enterprise and ability to access and utilize real-time data will give them the resilience and agility needed to weather any storms that may arise and gain a true competitive advantage.

Find out more about InterSystems and their recent survey into the biggest technology and data challenges financial services organizations face >>