A new company, Data Compliance & Integrity Ltd (DCI), has been created to help firms in the wealth management and wider financial service sectors to proactively address the issues arising from bad or missing data.

Simon Ray, the former COO of European Wealth and one of the Founding Directors of DCI explains, “Between the three founders of the business, we have to admit to over 100 years of experience in the finance sector. Over the course of those many years we have noticed that more problems with software are caused by bad or missing data than anything else. The vast majority of firms do not have comprehensive tools to proactively monitor all their data and therefore spend vast amounts of time and money firefighting issues arising from data errors and are unable to identify and address the systemic failings leading to these issues in the first place.

Just the smallest of errors, or gaps, in firm’s data creates the potential for a ripple effect throughout their systems with potentially major consequences for the business. Not just damage to reputation but possible financial losses, breaches and even regulatory sanctions in the worst cases.

Of course, all businesses have a duty to maintain accurate data but in the finance sector they also have a robustly regulated obligation to do so. The Systems and Control Source Book (SYSC) has the key aims of reducing harm to consumers and strengthening market integrity while the SMCR is heavily focused on making the senior managers and directors of firms absolutely and directly accountable for all aspects of their regulated business, which includes data integrity.

With all this in mind, DCI set out to develop a solution to allow firms to proactively address these obligations head on. Our virtual data integrity analyst doesn’t take holidays, or sick leave, and as a result continuously monitors data for errors using a comprehensive set of, system specific rules. When errors are found, our workflow engine presents them to the appropriate people or teams on a prioritised basis with solution narratives to ensure that swift remedial action can be taken.

User definable dashboards provide full oversight of all the data issues identified and ensure that senior management is kept fully informed of the number of data issues found, unresolved items and those with the potential for regulatory impact.

The DCI virtual data analyst becomes a key part of our clients operating procedures helping develop and maintain consistently high standards across the business whilst also highlighting those areas where additional investment in training or processes may be required.

DCI also provides detailed, evidential audit reporting for the business, auditors and perhaps most importantly the regulator.”

Simon goes on to say, “Many clients have multiple systems covering Portfolio Management, Financial Advice, CRM and so much more. As a result, DCI are working with a growing list of suppliers of those key systems to ensure wide integration and cross system data compliance checking. This approach also benefits the suppliers by ensuring that their software is as good as it can be from a data perspective, which of course can only help with user perception, client relations and market reputation.”