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Asset Managers Gripped in Battle to Improve Client Service Amidst Governance and Regulatory Burdens

RIMES releases third Annual Buy-Side Survey

RIMES, the award-winning provider of managed data services for the buy-side, today revealed that data management is no longer simply an internal challenge for asset managers as they face increasing pressure from clients to respond to growing demands for data. This comes at a time when the industry is battling to improve data quality and governance while also reduce data costs.

Growing client demand for data is now having a much larger impact on asset managers’ decisions relating to data management, according to the findings published today in the third RIMES 2015 Buy-Side Survey.

The Buy-Side Survey analysed responses of more than 120 key decision makers covering a cross section of asset managers and asset owners: investment management firms, custodian banks, hedge funds, pension funds, insurance companies, private banks and wealth management firms. Respondents represented a good cross-section of business functions, including compliance, risk, data management, front office, IT, operations and performance measurement. 50 percent of respondents come from institutions with more than $100bn assets under management.

Data quality improvement has leapt up the business agenda with 67 percent of buy-side firms citing this as their primary data management priority, up from 43 percent in 2014. Quality is now the single most important concern, followed by data governance.

Indeed, an overwhelming majority (75%) of firms acknowledge the main benefit to adopting best practice is data quality followed by 57 percent of firms listing data cost control as the secondary benefit.

Alessandro Ferrari, SVP Global Marketing, RIMES, said: “It’s a tough and unforgiving market environment for the buy-side at present. Facing pressures from clients to increase data sources and deliver higher levels of data customisation, asset managers are also under pressure to reduce costs and meet incoming regulation, particularly in Europe. It’s a perfect storm that means those firms with a robust data management strategy in place will come out on top.”

Other key survey findings:

  • 63% of respondents expect data costs to increase (73% in 2014)
  • 64% of respondents expect vendor data quality to stay the same while 28% expect it to improve
  • Use of data is growing beyond the core performance and data management teams:
    • 80% of risk departments now regularly use reference and benchmark data (59% in 2014)
    • 63% of compliance departments now regularly use reference and benchmark data (47% in 2014)
  • 30% cite reputation as the main benefit to adopting best practice data governance while 75% see quality as the main benefit.

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