Project Report: GDPR
A renowned UK-based private bank was facing new regulatory requirements as imposed by the latest General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that came into force on May 25th, 2018.
From the perspective of an EU-citizen, the new regulation aims to protect personal data and empower data privacy, a need to comply with nearly one hundred legal articles generated a significant workload for a data-driven financial institution.
The strong regulatory focus on rights of natural persons, combined with a complex IT-architecture on which client data is processed and stored poses a major challenge even for a mature organization. For this purpose, project workload has been planned and executed in a balanced-, risk-weighted manner.
A team of abaQon consultants delivered a formal project methodology underpinned by a focus on traceability which helped to structure the requirements and resultant deliverables. Due to the regulatory nature of the implementation, there was a need for consistent project documentation standards and evidence gathering for all decisions to create a fully defensible suite of information for audit purposes.
The delivery included a new IT build to serve the prescribed regulatory-, customer-driven use cases - such as the “Subject Access Request” (SAR) - and the required definition of supplementary processes. On top of this, abaQon was directly involved in analysis, documentation and implementation of requirements relating to strategic system remediation of over 20 high-risk systems (Avaloq being the master system for customer relationship data). Remediation activities covered aspects such as data retention, data minimization or controls over end-to-end data flows.
Side note: Although the project was driven by EU-GDPR regulation, Swiss institutions doing business with EU-residents need to comply with the provisions of this regulation. In the near future, a sibling of GDPR, the Swiss DSG will come into force having legal impact also for institutions serving Swiss residents.
Project Report: Reducing Operational Risk
A globally operating universal bank is managing its real estate portfolio and all related investment funds with a software that is approaching the end of its service life. Many run-the-bank activities and system enhancements are done by external software specialists due to their longstanding and specialized knowledge of the applied programming languages.
The bank decided to proactively approach the strong dependency by documenting the daily activities of the software specialists. The target was to mitigate the operational risk and be prepared in case the software specialists would not be available any longer.
abaQon was asked to accompany the employees of the external software provider, document their daily activities and compose an operating manual. The aim was to ensure that key business processes could continue after a potential service discontinuation by the external party. Our diverse and well-founded technical know-how in combination with the lean approach (minimal interruption of daily business) allowed the delivery of an extensive manual within only 4 weeks.
Project Report: Seamless Front-End Development
An internationally leading Fintech company has recently established a development framework consisting of a library of historically grown SOAP and REST services as well as various other building blocks to create web components. The vision was to build an e-banking website, which is entirely based on the modules of their development kit. The e-banking website will serve the company as demonstration of their product for future customers and developers. Furthermore, it will be integrated in regression tests. All key modules from the development kit are included in the project and hence, any new changes in these modules, which are responsible for the emergence of new faults, can be identified in an early stage.
As one of the first implementation partner, abaQon has built an entire end-to-end example based on the provided modules of the library. The term “end-to-end” includes the creation of an entire user interface as well as the processing of the data in the backend via SOAP and REST services. Various IT-specialists and developers from back- and front-end worked together on this task. With our proven expertise in either front- and backend, we figured as link between the different parties.
Project Report: E-Banking Upgrade and Integration
Our client, a well-known Swiss retail bank, decided to completely renew its online services. The vision was to integrate the community part, consisting of the public website, with the confidential part, the e- and mobile-banking, to create a seamless experience for both, their private clients, as well as their external asset managers.
Furthermore, the goal was to reduce the IT-architecture's complexity by having the online channels located directly on the core banking system, thus removing the need for separate interface applications like trading data and document archive.
abaQon supported the bank on this key project with a hands-on approach by specifically designing and implementing the wealth presentation for clients, the notification framework for any kind of market or customer event, and the payments integration. abaQon furthermore contributed by establishing technical file transfers. We also analysed and improved the system's performance and acted in a coordinating role between the bank, the software provider and all involved third parties.
Project Report: Core Banking Transformation
One of the top Swiss retail banks initiated a game changing project which aims at exchanging and modernizing their core banking infrastructure as well as changing their operational setup. Historically built as a cooperative of over 300 individual banks, the retailer suffers from little standardization and thus high operating costs as well as costly change-the-bank initiatives due to the heterogenous nature of the underlying system.
The goal of the project subsequently is to migrate onto a multi-entity capable state of the art core banking system and, at the same time, to standardize offerings and centralize processes, while still giving the banks a certain degree of freedom in order to account for local market specifics. Ultimately the new platform shall also be fit to expand it to third parties willing to outsource not only IT, but also operational processes.
abaQon supports the bank on this lighthouse project for the Swiss banking industry by taking key roles in the project organization, including project, stream and substream leads. We are responsible for managing all cross-stream related teams such as client output, cost & fees, accounting & access security etc. as well as for defining the future object model to its very detail. In addition we also lead the stream responsible for design and implementation of accounts, payments and financial security, where we cover multiple roles from stream lead to solution architect and implementation specialist. Of course we are excited and fully committed to play an important part realizing the banks vision.
Stay tuned! We always strive to add our most recent projects - but our first priority is to get them delivered, Marketing comes second. Be sure to check again soon.