CASE STUDY | FINANCIAL SERVICES | DATA & ANALYTICS
Financial Services organisation in Australia digitally upskills staff; improves reporting with Decision Inc. Australia
A religious charitable development fund which was established to provide lending and investment services.
About The Client
For more than 90 years this organisation has helped religious entities to manage and grow their finances through its range of financial products. Like many organisations across Australia, it was facing challenges in reporting due in large part to its reliance on legacy systems. This led to it seeking a modern data platform — one that was intuitive, reliable and scalable to future needs.
The organisation was feeling the shortcomings of a legacy data and reporting environment. Not only were many processes manual and onerous, but the relevance, performance and use of many reports had degraded over time.
It’s reporting environment was set up a long time ago, and its team members were finding it increasingly difficult to work with due to its aging processes and subpar results. It was also exceptionally difficult for the team to access underlying data, let along to analyse it and make informed strategic decisions.
– Aiden Heke, CEO, Decision Inc. Australia
The organisation sought a reliable and efficient platform for financial and customer reports that was simple for staff to use. This would support the accessibility, currency, accuracy and automation of data within its business.
The organisation also wanted to do away with the manual manipulation required in its current system by leveraging automation to integrate its various data sources and providers. A system that would be scalable and enable the future integration of emerging technologies, such as advanced analytics, was also crucial.
It began speaking to Decision Inc. Australia which was able to chart the path forward for the organisation.
Decision Inc. Australia’s team worked closely with the organisation to develop a full data platform strategy. Throughout the project, workshops took place with representatives from each team, so all levels of the organisation could understand what worked well, what didn’t, what they wanted to keep and what they wanted to throw away.
Following the workshops, the platform was deployed in Microsoft Azure, simplifying data management and governance. Integrations were automated into its banking system, CRM and other data sources, and opportunities were taken to implement direct integration with third parties to obtain up-to-date market data rather than the historic process of downloading and importing CSV files.
The data was modelled, and reports and analytics visualised, allowing non-IT personnel to more easily work with interactive insights and access reliable reporting to run their business. Once the platform was working to the organisation’s expectations, the Decision Inc. team trained end users to access and build their own reports and establish rich analytics outcomes.
Due to the complex value chain of the organisation, Decision Inc. leveraged our deep expertise in financial and performance management to develop rich analytics that included:
Investment profitability, cost of funds, funding source analysis, liquidity levels and detailed asset benchmarking against global indices
Detailed asset performance at a P&L and Balance Sheet level
Specific ethical and ESG investment portfolio performance
Customer investment and lending analysis
“Throughout the project we brought users into the process, so they wouldn’t defer to IT teams – which are contending with resource shortages across sectors – to solve day-to-day tasks,” Heke said.
The organisation is well on the path to having its organisational data in one, easy-accessible, secure data platform, and its team is confident its organisational data is managed in such a way as to meet their own and statuary data governance requirements.
The removal of the manual handling of market, budget and forecast data is predicted to save the organisation two to three days per month, and staff have provided positive feedback on the ease and speed of the new solution. The team also has increased confidence in the report data and find them much easier to use.
By using the Microsoft Azure platform to build this solution, scalability is built into the platform, meaning it can grow as the business grows. Azure also has many pre-built connectors, meaning new data systems can easily be integrated as and when it purchases new software. As automation needs arise, this can also be accommodated by the platform.
ABOUT DECISION INC. AUSTRALIA
Decision Inc. Australia is a leading independent data and analytics consultancy which delivers value from data faster.
As seen in The Australian Financial Review and The Weekend Australian, we serve the community and industry and believe great data and analytics expertise will underpin economic recovery and prosperity. We provide insights and accelerated business improvement capabilities to help our clients in their pursuit of progress.