RIMES 2020 Buy-side Survey: Global Data Management Trends

You can request* a copy of the full 2020 Buy-side Survey results by completing the form at the bottom of this page.

Good data is an essential ingredient of an asset management firm. Each year RIMES surveys across the industry to gauge the priorities, challenges and approaches of those who manage and consume data. The survey is global and provides a perspective on the regional variations as well as taking a truly industry-wide temperature check.

Many of the questions this year have been carried over from last year so not only a useful snapshot of the market now, but also an insight into the changing priorities of firms. We cannot ignore the impact of the current global pandemic on the results. The survey, in association with Sionic, was designed before true scale of COVID-19 could have been comprehended. However, it was launched at a time when COVID-19 was beginning to have an impact on global markets and includes responses from investment companies both before and after the announcement by the WHO on 12th March that COVID-19 had been classified as a pandemic. This provides a unique insight into the changing priorities of respondents as the pandemic unfolded.

New this year, the survey looks at the audits undertaken by market data vendors on their clients. We look at the numbers of audits undertaken, by which vendors and who are most likely to be targeted. One of the most discussed results of last year’s survey was the use of specific data solutions and services within an investment firm’s data architecture. We repeated the same question this year to understand if views have changed. What are the current views on Blockchain, data lakes and other technologies? We sought to uncover who was using these technologies, had an appetite to deploy a new solution or had decided that a solution was not for them.


This year 109 individuals responded to the data management survey from a range of firms, geographies and with various roles. Most responses came from individuals in Data Management or Data Governance functions, but Performance and Operations  were also well represented.

Geographically the split was fairly even with 41% of individuals based in EMEA, 27% from the Asia Pacific (APAC) region and the remaining 32% from North America. To provide further comparison we also asked respondents to identify how large their firm is, by assets under management/administration. Using these results, we were able to segment the responses by small firms (AUM under £30bn), medium (£31bn-$50bn), large ($51bn-$100bn) and very large (>$100bn). Just over half the respondents are managing over $100bn (53%).

Key Takeaways

  • Firms are still seeking more data but their approaches to the ever-increasing costs are changing
  • Blockchain appetite has declined dramatically this year whereas interest in AI is spiking
  • Around 20% of firms have reduced their data budgets compared to last year, whereas approximately 40% have seen an increase
  • In 2020 sourcing new data types e.g. ESG data has dramatically increased in prominence
  • The flexibility to use data – cited as a relatively important problem last year – has increased in importance this year

You can request a copy of the full 2020 Buy-side Survey results by completing the below form.

* RIMES reserves the right to share results with end-users only (asset managers, servicers, owners and banks). The Survey results cannot be sent to personal email addresses.

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