Author - OmniVista

Case Study for Support Management and Delivery for End-Of-Day Processes

1. Executive Summary:

[nz_sep top="0" bottom="20" width="100" height="2" type="solid" color="#f0634c" align="left" /] Firms in the financial space typically have end-of-day (EOD) processes which interface with various entities ranging from accounting systems, brokers, banks, internal personnel, trading systems, third-party firms, etc. in order to gather, clean, and distribute data. Many of these processes use varying levels of automation in order to provide speed and efficiency to an otherwise tedious and time consuming process. OmniVista Solutions has developed an EOD support model which allows us to provide the highest level of service and satisfaction to our clients. Our clients are able to rest assured that our team of highly-skilled and experienced senior consultants will provide full support coverage for all EOD processes and provide quick and effective solutions during any process breakdowns. Our primary differentiator is our knowledge and understanding of our clients’ tools, products, and flows. Understanding our clients’ systems as thoroughly as our clients assists us in developing highly-satisfied, long-term clients. The segregated 3rd party system was successfully implemented on time and with little to no impact on the day to day operations of the funds. [nz_gap height="25" /] [nz_gap height="25" /]

2. Terms:

[nz_il type="none" icon="icon-checkmark" icon_color="#f0634c" background_color="" ]
  • EOD (End-Of-Day) Processes:  A term used to describe items or tasks to be accomplished following market close.
[/nz_il] [nz_gap height="25" /]

3. Overview:

Our client utilized an advanced batch scheduling system to automate their EOD processes. A majority of the batch jobs were created and designed by the client’s internal IT team with varying levels of collaboration and input from our team ranging from none to moderate. Our role was to monitor, support, and continuously improve our client’s EOD system. In order to provide the level of service our firm holds ourselves accountable for, we put together automated monitoring controls such as success/failure messages which are emailed out following execution. We also maintain extensive documentation detailing every aspect of the client’s workflows both from a business (the reason) and functional (the solution) perspective. When a breakdown in the system occurs, it is this level of understanding that allows us to swiftly implement the appropriate resolution. [nz_gap height="25" /]

4. Situation:

While 100% uptime is always the desired, there are inevitable system breakdowns. Our client had a failure during a process which pulls data from a trade management system in order to create and distribute reports for end users. This process involves generating multiple PDF reports, merging them into a single report, and emailing out this report to a company-wide distribution list. [nz_gap height="25" /]

5. Multi-tiered Investigation:

Upon failure, our firm took immediate steps toward resolving this issue. Through our deep understanding of our client’s batch scheduling system, we were able to utilize its logging feature to identify the breakdown had occurred when multiple reports were merging into a single report. Our team then located the directory where the reports are stored. By referencing the documentation we had assembled, we quickly recognized that one of the reports was missing and error had actually occurred during the report generation. Next, we located the stored procedure used to compile the reports. After reviewing the stored procedure, we realized it was calling an SSIS program that was managed by one of the client’s internal teams. [nz_gap height="25" /]

6. Cooperative Resolution:

We communicated the system failure to the client and worked with them to fix the case logic that resulted in the report not being generated properly.Our team was effectively able to recognize a failure had occurred, locate the failure, trace the breakdown back to its source, and work with our client to rectify the issue in a matter of minutes. [nz_gap height="25" /]

7. Long-term Solutions:

For our firm, however, the work doesn't stop there. We then took a step back and considered how we could improve the system and process. One of the ways we improved this specific process was to make modifications to the process so that if a failure occurs when reports are being generated, we recognize it before the reports are merged. We accomplished this by building an additional task to make sure all reports exist before attempting to merge. Once we had a long term improvement to the report building process, we then implemented checks for other similar processes. [nz_gap height="25" /]

8. Conclusion

[nz_sep top="0" bottom="20" width="100" height="2" type="solid" color="#f0634c" align="left" /] While it takes more time, effort, and training to deliver this level of service, it is the OmniVista way. We believe in being thorough and doing things the right way. We understand the value created by putting in the extra work. We provide improved speed and efficiency when it matters the most. We strive to foster the highest level of insight and understanding so that our clients can enjoy the comfort and assurance of knowing they are always being taken care of. We take great pride in providing the absolute highest level of service which allows us to create satisfaction-rich, successful experiences that inevitably result in close, long-term relationships.

Case Study for Transforming a Fund’s Technology to Service 3rd Party Funds

1. Executive Summary:

[nz_sep top="0" bottom="20" width="100" height="2" type="solid" color="#f0634c" align="left" /] A Hedge fund client had extensive processes and custom integrations built within their investment management life cycle. This client needed to start supplying the same services and processes to a 3rd party fund manager. The client wanted to leverage their existing integrations, technologies and processes to support the 3rd party’s workflows. This would allow for one code base, development, and deployment methodology for both the client and the 3rd party; while maintaining an ethical, information, and technical barrier between the hedge fund and the 3rd party. This barrier was necessary in order to prevent exchanges or communication that could lead to conflicts of interest. OmniVista Solutions analyzed all of the features that were available to the current users. This included custom logic, reports, notifications, and scheduled processes. We then outlined a plan that would allow for the same flows and processes to be utilized across multiple client locations. We put together a team of consultants and the client’s full-time personnel to execute the project through the design, testing, training, and implementation phases. The segregated 3rd party system was successfully implemented on time and with little to no impact on the day to day operations of the funds. [nz_gap height="25" /] [nz_gap height="25" /]

2. Terms:

Here’s a few terms you should be familiar with: [nz_gap height="25" /] [nz_il type="none" icon="icon-checkmark" icon_color="#f0634c" background_color="" ]
  • OMS: An acronym for the Order OMS: An acronym for the Order System. This system is used by the Client to build/execute trades and to pass on to Settlement.
  • SOD: Start of day. Typically referenced for pre-market opening in-house preparation processes.
  • EOD: End of day. Typically referenced for post-market closing in-house preparation processes.
[/nz_il] [nz_gap height="25" /]

3. Overview:

Our client required that the 3rd party would have all of the same functionality and processes in place as their current users while maintaining a barrier between the two organizations. Items included in the split were as follows: [nz_gap height="25" /] [nz_il type="none" icon="icon-checkmark" icon_color="#f0634c" background_color="" ]
  • Order Management System (OMS)
  • Custom Trade Flow Service
  • Custom Allocation Service
  • Trade Loads to In-House Data Repository
  • Reports/Reconciliations
  • Trading System Customization
  • Scheduled Processes (BOD/EOD Loads)
  • FIX functionality
  • Reference and Market Data Provider
  • Data Repository
  • Broker Trade Matching Systems
[/nz_il][nz_gap height="25" /] The first task at hand was to identify instances where the client had been referenced either by name or acronym within customizations, reports and databases. Through the use of scripts, propriety tools and other search methods, we identified and documented all references to the client that would need to be configurable to support the new 3rd party integration and use. A new instance of the investment management environment and systems were created for the 3rd party, including: a new OMS and database instance, Citrix, Reference and Market Data Provider instance, and FIX Server. Within the OMS, the client had custom tools and processes to streamline their workflows. This included the trading system customization and integration. For example, the client had a custom allocation flow that went into effect when a certain account was used. This flow needed to be mirrored for the 3rd party, but they would need a different fund and subsequently all references to this fund also needed to be changed and configurable. The client also had many batch processes that needed to be considered. Many of these processes ran stored procedures to load data or to send out emails. All SQL database objects were created with parameters that could be passed in. This allowed the database objects to be the same for all environments. The recipient company name was passed into the stored procedures to distinguish which environment process was being run in. The client had various scheduled reports and emails initiated through database executions and reporting services. The 3rd party wanted to leverage all the client’s reports. To accommodate this, parameters and conditional logic were added to the processes to control report and email headers, footers, comments and subjects. For trade settlement, most investment firms integrate with a trade settlement software/system for order matching with a broker. We needed to work with the vendor to setup a new instance of the Broker Trade Matching Services. This consisted of updating configurations within the OMS, setting up users, setting up profiles, and testing the flow. The final large effort item was setting up the OMS database for the 3rd party. The 3rd party wanted to use as much of the client’s reference and security data, in addition to keep the 3rd party’s historical trades that were in the system. Rather than starting from a new fresh database and adding the required data, we used the existing client’s database and scripted the removal of the client’s proprietary data and addition of new configurations. The end result was a new OMS environment and integration sharing the same services for ease of support, integration and future development. [nz_gap height="25" /]

4. Conclusion

[nz_sep top="0" bottom="20" width="100" height="2" type="solid" color="#f0634c" align="left" /] OmniVista Solutions combined our comprehensive business and technical understanding of trading workflows to deliver a holistic solution to our client. We not only designed for today, but also ensured that the solution was configurable so that we can easily add new 3rd parties in the future. Our team of senior industry consultants successfully delivered a segregated investment management system to the 3rd party with little to no impact on their day to day business operations.