Investment Operations

Survey Reveals Need for Automated Corporate Actions Solutions

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There is a great industry need for automated corporate actions solutions, according to a survey by SIX conducted among leading global asset managers, wealth managers, custodians, clearing houses and investment banks. The survey was carried out from April to June 2020 to analyse their current corporate actions’ operational and technology challenges and opportunities.

  • 87% of respondents currently process part of their corporate actions manually; 45% of respondents need corporate actions processed as close to real time as possible
  • Nearly three-quarters of respondents (74%) have an automation project for their corporate actions processing underway or are looking to initiate a project in the next three years
  • Over half (51%) see data quality and legacy technology/infrastructure as biggest barrier to automating corporate actions processing

With the vast majority (87%) of those surveyed currently processing part of their corporate actions manually and some 30% processing more than half of their corporate actions manually, SIX said it is clear that the time for automated solutions is now. But firms will face challenges in the form of data quality and legacy technology/infrastructure, as over half (51%) reveal that this is the biggest barrier they encounter when turning to automation.

The main findings of the survey reveal that nearly half (45%) of respondents expressed a desire for corporate actions to be processed as close to real time as possible and a quarter (25%) of respondents are looking to initiate an automated project imminently.

Among the benefits of automating corporate actions processing, respondents selected reducing operating costs as the biggest driver with managing growing corporate actions volumes coming in second and improved quality of client service as the third biggest driver.

“This survey shows the increasing requirement for automation to allow firms to process data as close to real time as possible, eliminating failures and strengthening a firm’s offering,” said Annelotte De Nanassy, Senior Product Manager, Financial Information, SIX. “By relieving themselves of such a manual labour-intensive task, they will be able to reduce operating costs, manage growing corporate actions volumes and, in turn, service their clients better,” she added.

The survey also provided insight on the types of technology that firms believe will improve the quality of corporate actions processing with over 40% of firms selecting artificial intelligence (AI), 20% selecting cloud-based solutions and a quarter selecting blockchain/distributed ledger technology .

More information about the survey is available here