Ardilla were engaged by a global banking systems vendor to undertake an in-depth review of their eBanking product in order to assess its suitability for the UK and European market place.
Ardilla put together a small team to undertake the evaluation based at the Client’s offices.
Issues were logged and tracked and priorities assigned for each module.
Ardilla documented missing functionality and commented on the system usability to a level of detail that allowed the Client to feed the information directly into their Agile development process.
Ardilla delivered a set of recommendations to the Client in the form of a formal review together with a full set of functional documents which the Client was able to feed directly into their development process, leveraging their internal resources and speeding up the delivery of change to allow the Client to maximise its opportunity to sell into the UK and European Market.
There was also significant knowledge transfer between the Ardilla resources and the Client’s business development and technical teams.
Subsequent to this initial engagement, Ardilla were engaged to deliver a set of specification documents to allow the Client to re-write their eBanking payment generation module and verify that the payment schemes contained in the system adhered to UK and European regulations and standards.
Brian Barnes lead an e-commerce and cyber threat audit for a major British Travel Operator and Travel Services provider. In parallel with this audit we reviewed supporting software products that were available in both the Travel Sector and wider marketplace with a specific cyber active role addressing attack vectors that appeared to be topical for our client.
The object of the exercise was to review on-line services currently offered, increase the on-line presence and offering and to complete a specification for a fully automated and cyber protected customer booking experience.
The team worked under the auspices of the Chief Operating Officer and took input from and provided output to the IT department, Group Communications, Marketing and Sales.
We conducted interviews with the Stakeholders and the first line interface with them across all departments and directly with some specially selected customers.
Additionally, we worked on their customers site and operated the reporting and feedback part of the system for a period of time to collect operational and performance data which in turn enabled us to adjust the process over time to achieve an optimal result.
We compiled a comprehensive profile of each existing interface and their processing dynamics, including what worked well and where there was room for improvement, with a particular focus on the Cyber Security aspects as well as in efficiency and in better revenue generation. We also reviewed the interface to the industry standard booking systems and provided implementation services for the products specified.
We also delivered a specification for a portfolio of products which would deliver a Cyber aware front end for the stakeholders to use to drive the customer booking experience as defined within the company mission statement and embodied in the supporting revised IT systems.
Ardilla were engaged to design and implement a new Global Operating Model for a UK Asset Manager.
Our Client was mid way through their operations outsourcing programme when it became clear that, as a priority, they needed to update their operating model in order to support their business going forward. They also needed to ensure that their model was properly supported by the model being developed by their outsource partner through a formal validation process.
Ardilla developed a high level model and accompanying guiding principals and then set about cataloguing all the functions performed by the asset manager.
Having validated that model through the firm's Design Authority, we then developed a library of individual operating models at the functional level which could then be reviewed against the models developed by the outsource partner.
We then reviewed the operating models supplied by the outsource partner to ensure that they dovetailed with the Client model.
Through that exercise, we identified:
- several of the outsource partner models were not formally document
- there were breaks between the asset manager and outsource models that needed to be remedied prior to the full service transition and
- several processes that could not be transitioned and would need to be retained by the asset manager in the short term
Ardilla delivered a library of individual operating models (client and outsource partner) and supporting documentation for each functional area which had been validated against the outsource partner models. We then partnered with operations management in 2 locations to implement the new model.
Ardilla was asked initially to conduct an audit of a late running outsourcing project for a UK Asset Manager in the process of moving their middle and back office to a large outsource provider.
After completing the audit Ardilla was subsequently engaged to bring the programme back on track and Ardilla resources were given key roles within the project including the role of Programme Director.
Our recommended organisational changes were implemented in order to streamline reporting and to bring accountability to key roles within the programme and associated projects.
Governance was reduced and the teams were given clearly defined roles and responsibilities.
Project plans were reworked, simplified and made real through active engagement with the outsource provider and the overall programme plan was adjusted.
This was all achieved through experience of doing this type of exercise before and knowing which activities were the must have requirements.
The programme was brought back on track and with the new internal project structure, responsibilities and accountabilities were clear.
Project reporting was streamlined and more time was given to effective delivery of the individual projects concerned within the programme.
The Programme Director role became one of stakeholder management and at this point was transitioned back to an internal permanent resource.
Our team were asked by the COO of a large Hedge Fund to conduct a review of their total business process and personnel. This was to cover the total remit of their business process from front office through to middle and back office.
The Client was looking for efficiencies to their current process in order that they could reduce the numbers of temporary staff in their middle and back office. Also they needed to streamline the front office process to reduce risk, due to the high volume of exotic off balance sheet instruments that they were dealing.
We interviewed key individuals within the organisation and on a part time basis assigned them to the project team. Within all areas of the business process members of the full time project team worked on the current physical process model. On completion and through workshops the current physical model was then worked on to produce a logical model and then a new future state physical model. In tandem to this exercise the personnel involved in the process were reviewed and where necessary were given extra training and coaching.
Using the information gained from the model exercise and the personnel involved a new robust future state model was designed and implemented.
The new model proved to be more robust and was acknowledged to reduce the risk in the total business process workflow. Additional efficiencies were also recognised and were documented, and these were prioritised and worked on as separate exercises after the main review was concluded.
It was accepted that by undertaking this exercise the business became more efficient in both reducing the risk of error and enabling them to take on more business volume as a consequence.
David Reeve and Sue Woodstock led a front to back review of the change process for a global outsource provider in order to identify efficiencies in the process and organisation.
Working with the Head of the change team, we reviewed their whole process front to back commencing with the receipt of a change request from the client right through to development, testing and deployment. We also reviewed the roles and responsibilities of the change team, operations and technology, and the documentation being utilised to obtain implementation costs and customer sign off, participating in regular meetings with the client.
We made the assignment real, by becoming part of the change team and took on responsibility for some of the changes received during our engagement, so that we could “walk in their shoes” and validate what we had heard from the team in terms of their daily challenges.
We identified a number of process and organisational changes that would improve the turnaround of changes to the client, improve the level of engagement between the change team, operations and IT departments, which in turn would improve the relationship between the provider and their Client. Through our review of the contract details, we also identified areas for increasing revenue.
In terms of the change organisation, we worked with the head of the Change Team to look at the structure of the team, the roles and responsibilities of the individuals in that team, together with an assessment of the knowledge, skill levels and working styles of each team member. From this exercise we then wrote new job descriptions, capturing both the responsibilities and core competencies required to perform in that role.
From a process perspective, we then created new workflows in Visio, and delivered a completely new set of project documents with components that could be re-used and referred to throughout the project’s lifecycle.
Our Consultant was asked to undertake a rapid review of the testing process for a UK Asset Manager.
The Client had reached a point in their outsourcing project where they were encountering multiple challenges in testing with the outsource partner and, given the tight timeframes, wanted to explore whether there was a more efficient way of getting through the multiple testing cycles without introducing additional risk.
Their process was complicated considerably by the use of shared testing environments which were subject to very stringent testing time slots, and lack of clear ownership and leadership in co-ordinating testing between the two organisations.
With his depth of knowledge, our Consultant was quickly able to identify a number of areas that needed to be addressed and established a mechanism for more closely co-ordinating the testing efforts on both sides, which lead to significant improvements in the quality of code being presented for testing and the turnaround of defects once identified.
Our consultant went on to assume the role of Test Manager for the programme and successfully completed sufficient testing in order for the first phase of the outsource programme to go live on schedule.