The right place at the right time…the power of vision, technology and collaboration

Published by Deborah Repak, Managing Director - General Manager, First Rate Global
November 29th, 2016

If you build it they will come.field of dreams

Sometimes the key to solving your clients’ problems is the resource most available to you – you just have to see it. That’s how First Rate’s ExecView was conceived – with a moment of recognition, followed by a development journey that involved new requirements by the industry, a client’s need and a development team.

The idea for ExecView germinated from a conversation with a client managing various Rep as PM programs at their firm. As they explained their current process to extract data out of disparate systems to create complex spreadsheets and then summarize it manually with Microsoft Excel – it became apparent that there must be a better way.  Rather than spreadsheets, discussions around a portal allowing them to view data top-down and then drill into exceptions based on selected criteria evolved through prototyping. If a solution could identify outliers based on a firm’s business rules, it could also expand decision-making capabilities.

Since reporting on financial data and returns for wealth managers and broker dealers has been First Rate’s focus in the market space, we had access to a large body of financial data. That data could be transformed into information allowing clients to view macro trends in accounts, sectors, and as granular as the security level.

Broader Oversight for Increased Efficiency and Staying out of trouble

Once our existing clients saw the first iteration of ExecView, they began to offer suggestions for new ways to view the data, such as fee averages across accounts, asset turnover ratios, top performers, and key risk statistics across selected domains to name a few. This solution can be leveraged to oversee a large set of data in one view and answer their questions.

ExecView can create risk, return, and asset allocation concentration reports across tens of thousands of accounts within seconds. An investment firm can use it to run checks-and-balances on individual accounts and document and address those out of line. ExecView helps prevent issues with regulatory agencies regarding trading regulations, cash management, and diversification to name a few.  Exceptions can be exported and documented to aid in collecting information needed to demonstrate oversight during an audit.  With the recent DOL ruling around fiduciary responsibility for retirement accounts, the importance of this type of solution has skyrocketed.

Scenarios Transformed by Automated Oversight and Compliance

By automating oversight and compliance, ExecView addresses multiple challenges:

  • Helping clients with regulatory requirements – Data visualization techniques shed light on trends and practices that might otherwise be overlooked, enabling early intervention and reducing risk.
  • Portfolio oversight – Managers can spot outliers based on their firm’s unique business rules and strategies, through high-level views across large groups of accounts and filter by flexible criteria.
  • On-demand account data – A customer support representative can quickly retrieve all customer-relevant information for the customer as of the most recent update, thereby improving service experience.
  • Investment oversight – Oversight officers can find where AUM may be increasing or decreasing and keep a record of accounts violating risk management, cash management, and diversification rules.

All types and sizes of financial firms can benefit from ExecView, as First Rate’s versatile system can scale with the data without compromising functionality.

About the Author: Deborah Repak, Director in the Products group, has been part of First Rate since its inception. She initially worked as a part-time consultant and then became the second full-time employee in May of 1992. As a Director in the Products group, her responsibilities include assisting and leading the technical team in key development initiatives. Repak is a graduate of Louisiana State University and also has an MBA in Finance from North Texas University. Connect with Deborah via LinkedIn.

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