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Service Spotlight: New ESG Indices, A Series of Fund Launches and Seemingly Impossible Deadlines

In March 2018, a long-standing RIMES client notified RIMES that they had commissioned a series of new ESG indices from their new index provider.

The indices – covering multiple assets from equities and commodities, to fixed income and RAFI factors – were to be used across a range of new funds to be launched on a rolling basis between May and June, 2018. The client wanted to ensure RIMES would have advance notice in order to prepare.

During this same timeframe, the client’s new index provider was to be finalizing specifications from the client and developing the new indices on their end. However, the provider soon informed the client and RIMES that there would be a delay in delivering the indices – resulting in very tight deadlines for RIMES. With the new timeframe provided by the index provider, RIMES would have no more than four to seven days per index launch to redistribute and manage the data. So much for the advance notice, but a challenge that RIMES was certainly up for!

A Critical Priority

All three parties rallied together to overcome the tight deadlines and stay on schedule for the client’s fund launches. The provider agreed to make one index available ahead of the others in order to test the processes between the client and RIMES – while ensuring the client would meet their earliest scheduled fund launch. From the moment RIMES received the data from the index provider, the client’s IT resources would be booked and waiting to set up and test the RIMES delivery.

The RIMES Content and Development teams treated the project as a critical priority and liaised closely with the client’s data partner. RIMES passed the first phase with ease, developing a new custom database and onboarding the new index from a new file format – enabling the RIMES Client Services team to deliver test files to the client within seven working days – a full two weeks before the initial fund launch.

This was followed by extensive testing to ensure the content met with the client’s expectations.

Thanks to the strong collaboration between the client, data partner and RIMES – combined with the teamwork amongst the RIMES Content, Data, Performance and Client Services team – the client was able to smoothly integrate five new sets of indices into their systems in time for their planned fund launches.

All Systems Go

At each step of the process, RIMES played a key role in aligning internal priorities, dedicating the correct amount of resources, and building custom requirements. The effort ensured delivery of each new feed in time for each of the client’s fund launches, with turnover times ranging from no more than four to seven working days. In total, RIMES developed three custom databases with complete validation checks, ultimately delivering 21 feeds covering 11 custom indices, all within days of receipt from the data partner.

During the subsequent service review, the client credited RIMES with ensuring they were able to successfully deliver nearly a dozen new custom indices on time and within fairly tight deadlines.

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