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Secure portals for Institutional Investors

Institutional Investors are professionals; portals must be designed to fit in their working lives.

Theo Paraskevopoulos
Posted by Theo Paraskevopoulos 10 Jul 2019

“The portal is the tangible part of the service”, says Manuel, a Hedge Fund Analyst at a Family Office in Zurich. Reporting to the Chief Investment Officer, his job is to track funds, make recommendations to the committee and report on progress.

"Treat me like a professional"

“The best portals treat me like a professional, and let me do my job quickly”. Manuel works with a number of Institutional Asset Managers across the globe and is well placed to identify the ingredients of great customer experience.

“I do different tasks each day”, says Manuel. Most days he is just after the headlines: a current valuation and latest performance. Frequently, he will dig a little deeper into asset allocation and the manager’s comments. On a monthly basis, he needs to get the raw numbers for his models and charts for the committee reports.

The annual meetings with the Fund managers is a big deal. “A portal cannot replace the meeting, but it helps it go more smoothly”. In preparation, Manuel collects historical performance and pores into risk and attribution data. His analysis takes center-stage, so accuracy and flexibility are important.

“I am a data professional. I get annoyed if a portal is fiddly or doesn't give me the information I need to do my job”. That's clear enough, but what are the implications for a secure portal CX?

A B2B customer journey

Institutional asset management is a B2B experience: analytical, process-driven, team-oriented. A professional investor needs a lot more in-depth functionality than a consumer, but it must still be presented clearly.

To put Manuel’s requirements in context, it is useful to plot them in a matrix based on the information he needs and the available time to get to it.

Customer Needs V Available time

50 sec: Headlines

Daily.
Quick glance on the headline numbers for verbal reporting.

5 mins: Overview

Ad-hoc.
Spot-check of key measures to verify the direction of travel.

50 mins: Report

Monthly.
Obtain numbers and charts for formal reporting.

5 hours: Analysis

Quarterly.
Historical review; check alignment against strategy.

Implications for CX

In this light, we can start drawing some conclusions and solid requirements for the portal:

  • A strict hierarchy of data - headline figures, performance and breakdowns
  • Flexible charting, with exporting tools across custom timespans for reporting
  • An archive for historical data and documents for less frequent tasks
  • Reduced clutter and clearly sign-posted navigation
  • No“retail” tricks such as attention-grabbers - they make little sense in B2B
  • Advanced security, confidentiality, and compliance provisions
  • Analytics and Insights on how the portal is used will help optimise the experience

Institutional Investors are B2B relationships, and the experience needs to match their expectations. Customers may be professionals, but that is no excuse for unnecessary complexity. The best CX allows them to navigate through layers of data, whilst fitting into their busy working lives.