LEADING BANK DRASTICALLY REDUCES DATA COLLATION TIME AND INCREASES PRODUCTIVITY
“Previously, it would take us 15 days to collate the data and verify information. Now, we are able to do the same process in a fraction of the time. This is remarkable!”
First Vice President
As an international trade finance specialist, FIMBank p.l.c. is required to comply with regulatory requirements by submitting periodical (monthly, quarterly or annually) financial reports to its regulators The Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA) and The Central Bank of Malta (CBM). When reporting was done manually, it was time-consuming and resource intensive. The bank needed a solution that would allow it to reduce the time it took to prepare and verify the supervisory and prudential returns. By implementing BRSANALYTICS, the bank was able to achieve its goals and more.
FIMBank p.l.c. is a credit institution licensed in Malta and provides a whole range of trade finance solutions, including structured trade finance, forfaiting and factoring. The Bank is a public limited company and listed on the Malta Stock Exchange. The FIMBank Group operates through a wide network of offices, subsidiaries, joint ventures and associate companies that are spread across different geographical areas. One of its goals is to provide innovative and tailor-made trade financial solutions to its customers in more than 50 countries across four continents.
As with any banking institution, FIMBank p.l.c. is subject to financial regulation by supervisory bodies. This requires FIMBank p.l.c. to submit periodical financial reports to regulators. In practice, this means collating all relevant data, verifying information, entering it in predetermined reporting templates and then submitting it to the regulators.
This task was very time-consuming and required a lot of resources from the Finance team. “In the past, the reporting process was done manually. Because of this, there was the likelihood that our regulatory reports were not accurate and prone to errors. We also had no significant audit trails. It was up to the individual team members to collate and verify the information. Another major issue for us is that reporting follows a tight 15-day window following the reporting day. Because we used to spend most of our time manually aggregating the relevant information, we had very little time left to verify the data,” says Gilbert Coleiro, First Vice President at the bank.
“This means that we had to regularly follow up with our regulators as we didn’t have enough time to deliver quality reports. This situation was not ideal because we pride ourselves in the quality of our work and that all information submitted by the bank ought to be of a high quality,” he adds emphatically. Management took a bold decision to upgrade to an automated regulatory reporting system since this function was taking up too much time of the Finance team as well as affecting the quality of the bank’s deliverables to the regulator.
As the Finance team appraised its current situation, they realised that in order to meet their periodical financial reporting deadline there were only two possible options: either hire more people, or find ways to automate their processes so that the team could improve its efficiency as well as enhance the quality of the regulatory reports. It was clear to everyone that the second choice would best serve the needs of the Bank and the Finance team.
Management subsequently contacted Computime Ltd., a trusted IT partner and explained their problem. Computime suggested BRSANALYTICS (which is based on Microsoft SQL technology), a solution specifically designed to automate financial reporting for banks. The solution makes use of the full Microsoft BI stack (SSIS, SSAS and SSRS) for providing a wealth of functionality such as drill-downs that enable business users to analyse and respond to regulators’ queries.
Deploying BRSANALYTICS at FIMBank p.l.c. would be the first-of-its-kind in Malta. Computime conducted a proof of concept (POC), showing what BRSANALYTICS can do for the bank. “In order to be able to ensure that we would be providing the most suitable solution for the bank, we looked very carefully at the requirements coming from the regulators. Our consultants then had a number of meetings and workshops with the bank’s finance team in order to map out the design, testing and rolling out of the solution,” says John Wood, Joint Managing Director of Computime.
“The deployment of BRSANALYTICS has proven to be a resounding success”
DRASTIC REDUCTION OF DATA COLLECTION AND VERIFICATION TIME
Because of the solution, the Bank has been able to dramatically reduce the time it took to prepare regulatory reports by at least gaining 75% efficiency. “Previously, it would take us 15 days to collate the data and verify information. Now, we are able to do the same process in a fraction of the time. This is remarkable!” says Gilbert enthusiastically.
INCREASE IN PRODUCTIVITY
Because the finance team no longer had to spend a lot of time preparing the regulatory reports, this has resulted in a 60-70% increase in their availability. This has given its members the time to focus on primarily ensuring a more qualitative output and submission to Regulators as well as be more efficient on resource and dedicate time to other assignments.
IMPROVED DATA QUALITY
“As a credit institution, it is very critical that the information that we present to the regulators, our customers and shareholders is 100% accurate. I’m very happy to say that because of BRSANALYTICS, we have achieved this goal.”
“The data that is collected has resulted in a business intelligence or data warehousing solution for our Finance team, since we are now able to analyse the data in a more structured and intelligent manner. Right now, the project has only benefited the Bank as a single entity. Because of its potential, the next step is to take advantage of the reporting capabilities of the solution and deploy it to the group’s subsidiaries (FIMBank Group).”
One of the reasons that BRSANALYTICS was chosen by the Bank is its ability to be localised or adapted so that the output of the financial reports complies with that country’s banking or regulatory requirements.
“The FIMBank Group operates globally. As such, it is important for us that our solution is not only specific to Malta, but can also be used to comply with the regulatory requirements in the countries that we operate in.”
“For FIMBank p.l.c., deploying the solution has proven to be a game changer. By implementing BRSANALYTICS at our bank, we are now able to focus on other important assignments, gain better insight on our financial activities, be more productive and improve our decision making due to the use of business analytics. I’m very happy that we initiated this project.”
Customer: FIMBank p.l.c
Customer Size: 160 employees
Country or Region: Malta
Partner: Computime Ltd
Customer Profile: FIMBank p.l.c. is registered in Malta and is an international trade finance specialist. It is listed on the Malta Stock Exchange and has customers in more than 50 countries across four continents.
Software and Services
• Microsoft Server Product Portfolio
– Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 Standard
– Microsoft SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS)
– Microsoft SQL Server Analytical Services (SSAS)
– Microsoft SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS)
Third Part Software
For more information about other Microsoft customer successes, please visit: www.microsoft.com/casestudies