BACKGROUND

Meradia was retained by a leading global asset servicing company to solve scalability problems arising from the rapid growth of their data warehouse. Expansion of the firm’s data warehouse to meet the influx of new clients and service offerings was complex with the extension of historical data and addition of new functionality. Complicating the expansion were substantial numbers of errors occurring in parallel testing phases which prevented the migration of enhancements to production. Each new client had different needs and requirements. Staff from various teams across the globe serviced the new clients while also working to enhance functional offerings to meet specific needs of each. One client might use attribution and contribution modules; another might use only fee billing components. Meradia was tasked with investigating and addressing root cause issues and creating a repeatable process to support continued client transitions.

ANALYSIS

Through a series of intake sessions with various functional stakeholders, Meradia quickly determined errors appeared throughout the transaction lifecycle from trade capture to client reporting. Errors were sent daily to teams responsible for trade capture, security reference, performance, accounting, client service and GIPS composite functions, including reconciliation. Each team had its own set of procedures for error resolution, resulting in discrepancies across the organization. Procedures included workflows, problem description, resolution process and escalation protocol. Meradia identified, documented and implemented changes to resolve the issues regarding errors, procedures and resolution. Documentation was a significant challenge as many people knew the procedures, but nothing was put to paper. Knowledge transfer between individuals or groups is impeded without written procedures. The firm asked Meradia to document step-by-step instructions, including detailed screen shots. Meradia scheduled documentation sessions with each team to build a complete library of procedures, facilitating knowledge transfer between staff and groups. Documented procedures also helped to mitigate data quality issues visible to the firm’s clients.

RESULTS

Meradia applied a big picture view in a way that the firm’s various staff embedded in their daily processes could not. Each team requested different templates for errors and procedure formats. Meradia built a general consensus with all groups and produced a standardized template. Procedures and controls for errors affecting various groups were developed and implemented. Group managers were made responsible for ensuring that their teams followed new procedures and controls. Scalability and repeatability in the underlying data warehouse was improved as teams understood the end-to-end impact of each new change made visible by new, daily error templates. For the first time there was an immediate feedback loop funneling impact data back to process participants and resulting in error free data for end-clients out of the data warehouse as all anomalies were held and checked before data was released for end-client consumption.

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