June 2, 2021 | Best Practices

How Will New Technology Shape Investment Operations?

By Bob Feng, Director of APAC Business, Enfusion

I recently sat as a panelist to AIMA’s “How New Technology Will Reshape Investment Operations?” webinar. Here are my five biggest takeaways for operational and investment leaders.

  1. Remote Access is Here to Stay

As more people work from home, it is vital to ensure you have an effective workflow and real-time transparency—both help provide accurate views of current work tasks and outcomes.

  • A virtual environment: It’s vital to the entire workflow process, from supporting video conferencing, to NAV chain, to onboarding new staff. 
  • Cloud and Automation: Moving to the cloud keeps your processes streamlined and accessible anywhere, in addition to improving data flow. 
  1. Ask These Key Questions to Overcome Operational Challenges 

When assessing front-, middle- and back-office operations, ask these questions:  

  • Data accuracy: Can the software support the same set of data from front-to-back office while maintaining accuracy that prevents human errors?
  • Data Storage: Does your solution allow for data back-up in the cloud, so the whole team can access it at any time, anywhere? 
  • Capability: Can your software handle the complexities of a firm running multiple funds and a variety of multi-asset classes?  
  • Cost: Whether bringing on a new service provider or migrating all of your data to the cloud – is your method cost-efficient? These are important decisions for a start up and established funds alike. 
  1. Automate to Achieve Transformation

For a Fund Manager, automation can:

  • Avert manual workflows
  • Allow for investment management transformations
  • Increase efficiency and give more time to focus on generating alpha
  1. Maximize Innovation Scalability

Limitations with legacy systems include:

  • Large technology debt: Lagging systems can cause operational inefficiencies that not only require costly and frequent maintenance, but may prove unable to integrate with newer tools and systems. 
  • Operational and technical risk: Complicated maintenance procedures, security concerns, and constraints to trading portfolios can put your operational workflow at risk.
  • Upkeep with Trends: Systems must evolve in tandem with hedge fund managers; they must keep up with current trends and evolve ways of doing business within the on-the-go environment. 

How to maximize innovation scalability:

  • Adopt the Cloud: Integrating a cloud-native solution (born and built in the cloud) ensures you can leverage full cloud capabilities and scale. 
  • Adhere to the upgrade cycle:  A true cloud platform updates frequently—i.e., weekly—so that you can keep pace with ever-changing investment operations requirements. 
  • Use Compatible Vendors: Not all software systems can talk to each other, as many have their own logic and data features. As such, adopting the right number of vendors—who can work together—can boost efficiency and create a highly unified workflow process.  
  1. Embrace & Integrate Technology Advancements 

As technology advancements across the financial services industry continue to rise, there are a few things you can keep in mind as an operational or investment management leader:

  • Make sure your IT infrastructure can support and scale your business.
  • Know how your data is managed, and ensure it is secured, protected, and available where and when you need it. 
  • Think like a start-up by seeking scalable solutions that can adapt to rapid growth.

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