The Importance of Reporting

April 20, 2011

Aite Group recently released an excellent report that shares their expectations for technology spending in 2011, suitably titled 2011 “Capital Markets Technology Spending:  Risk, Compliance and Uncertainty Abound”.  To create the article, Aite group surveyed CIOs at capital markets firms from December 2010-January 2011.

Despite the title of the article, Aite Group found that client reporting was the #1 technology priority for executives, followed by compliance.  In Aite’s 2010 study, they found similar results – client reporting was the 4th most important priority behind information security, compliance and execution management technology.

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So what’s driving the importance of reporting, and why has its significance increased since 2010?

I’ve read countless industry publications and seen first-hand that investor sentiment has changed due to the recent economic downturn.  Investors are becoming more active with their investments – they are demanding more transparency into the investment process, monitoring returns more closely and asking for more varied types of information from asset managers.

All of this information is provided by an investment manager’s reporting system.  But despite client demands, many firms aren’t equipped to provide this information because they are using legacy systems or home-grown solutions that lack functionality.  And given the pressure on margins that most firms have experienced over the past few years, it’s no surprise that they have not invested in reporting capabilities.

I believe it is a mistake for firms to ignore client demands for better reporting.  As the investment management industry experiences ‘convergence’ and performance becomes less differentiated over time, clients will decide who to do business with based on factors other than returns…such as their ability to provide transparency and reporting that meets clients’ needs.

 

How do Thomson Reuters PORTIA solutions address the reporting needs of investors?

Client reporting must be flexible enough to address the demands of end-clients, but also scalable enough to pull together data from a wide range of solutions.  Investors don’t want to rely on different reports for performance data, holdings information and overviews of their portfolios – this doesn’t meet their need for transparency.

PORTIA’s enterprise-wide reporting solution pulls together data from disparate systems, formats the data and presents it to your end-clients the way they want to see it. That may be online through a secure website or as a monthly reporting package that is emailed or posted to them.  PORTIA can deliver the information investors need, when they need it.

In addition to this, Thomson Reuters PORTIA provides reports to your clients quickly and efficiently, including workflows to allow review and authorization prior to sending the reports. Rather than spend the rest of the month locking down portfolios and collating and formatting reports, PORTIA does this automatically.  This saves time and money, and ensures that you deliver approved and accurate reports that will differentiate your service from that of your competitors.

Are you observing client reporting as a key trend in the buy-side middle-to-back office?  What solutions matter most to you or your clients?

– Helen Jackson, Director of Product Management

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