Financial Services Case Studies
The financial services industry is known for its pressured environment and highly competitive nature. Companies in this industry use technology to gain competitive advantage by providing better services to their customers. There are two important qualities necessary to satisfy a financial services client: expediency and reliability. Both of these qualities are demonstrated by Beacon Hill in numerous projects for its financial clients, as is demonstrated by the scenarios listed below.
The refactoring and rewriting of a Structured Credit Trading and Reporting application for a Lehman Brothers
Prime Broker (Margin System)
The design of a Cross Margin application for Bear Stearns looking to enhance their Margin system for Hedge Fund clients
Single Sign On
The enhancement and subsequent redeployment of a SSO (Single-Sign On) system protecting over 400 applications at JP Morgin.
A system to manage the flow of information via the Equilend markup language for a the Prime Brokerage in a Wall Street.
Fund of Funds Trading System
The design and implementation of a SOA architecture to enable a Fund of Funds trading system to interact via SOAP messages with a number of other internal bank services.
Financial companies transfer thousands of documents every day. Many are sent the old-fashioned way: in hard copy. Prior to the existence of XML, Beacon Hill helped architect and design an Internet-based API and document transfer system for a client who, in turn, distributed the system throughout their sophisticated network of top-tier brokerage firms.
Beacon Hill was asked to develop a polling application, which retrieves highly confidential financial documents on a daily basis using the HTTPS protocol. Beacon Hill's involvement included the architecture and design of the system, development of the API as well as the client retrieval application. It is an application that demonstrates brilliant quality in design making it elegant and reliable, guaranteeing the company a competitive edge through its timely delivery of confidential financial information. Wall Street Models was featured in the Wall Street Journal. The two articles can be viewed on this site. The first is "Fidelity Asks Firms for 'Instant' Research" and the other is "Hot Stock-Data Pipeline Runs Directly to Fidelity".
On a daily basis, one of the largest mutual fund management companies in the world uses a research reporting system architected and designed by Beacon Hill. For more than three years, this company's research analysts have been publishing their analysis and recommendations utilizing the Beacon Hill system. As the major source of internal research, this system is critical to the company's success. Its ease of use and extreme reliability have made it one of the company's most highly regarded internal projects. Since going live in 1996, Research Reports has demonstrated a 100% performance rate requiring 0 hours of debugging or rework.
Global Meeting Scheduler
Financial services companies meet with external CEOs and executives in the course of everyday business. An existing scheduling system, developed in Lotus Notes, was cumbersome and inflexible, prompting the client to request a new system -- a system able to connect to internal financial databases, provide scheduling functionality, as well as provide the research on each company in one easy-to-use, web-based interface.
Beacon Hill developed architectural guidelines, designed, and created this system. It is currently used throughout every business day, by everyone in the company's entire financial analysis and management department.
Portfolio management software within the financial world is another area expertise for Beacon Hill. A Beacon Hill client was utilizing an internal system based on Unix workstations. Over time, it became apparent users were not getting the value they initially received because the bulk of their work was actually occurring on their Windows-based desktops. Cumbersome floppy-based file transfers made managers cringe. They desired the same functionality currently available in the Unix system on their Windows desktops and portables.
Beacon Hill designed and implemented a collection of Windows applications for use by the clients' managers and analysts. Part of the collection included an innovative navigator allowing for easy access and launching of various applications. The navigator was financially aware in order to pass the current issue or fund to each application, allowing the user to stay focused on the task at hand. The navigator also features a friendly interface which collects the user's applications into a book-and-tab metaphor.
The ease-of-use built into the entire collection of Windows applications was well received by every single user.
Financial companies receive a tremendous amount of information in hard-copy format. One client desired an automated system in order to scan, categorize and store captured information. Beacon Hill architected and designed a system capable of scanning external financial reports into PDF format, providing opportunities for browsing via a web browser. The system reduced considerably the number of documents needed for manual transport between departments.