Innovation Challenges

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Optimise Institutional Client On-Boarding Process (closed)

DWS Investments Singapore
This challenge has closed.
Audience: Students, Start-Ups, Businesses, Subject Matter Experts, Other, Researchers
Anticipated Funding: SGD 20,000
Closing date: February 14, 2020
Last Updated: February 16, 2020 10:04 PM
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The Challenge

DWS Investments Singapore (DWS) are global asset managers with strong and growing presence in Asia Pacific markets. They provide investment solutions primarily to individual/institutional clients through intermediaries.

Over the last decade, a shift in their customers’ expectation has impacted the way they do business traditionally. The industry has seen changes such as:

  • Customers becoming savvier, with greater access to information
  • Changing expectations of what customers pay their investment fees for
  • Transition from active to passive investing (which attracts lower fees)

So, investment managers are looking at other ways to optimise their processes and add value, such as:

  • Improving the speed at which they can respond the customer’s needs
  • Provide a seamless customer experience throughout their lifecycle including during on-boarding, servicing and reporting

Winning a client’s mandate (e.g. from a sovereign wealth fund) is a long journey in itself starting from preparing and submitting a RFP (request for proposal) to multiple rounds of shortlisting and pitching before finally getting selected. This can sometimes take months and even years. After the long process of selection, on-boarding of individual/institutional clients begins. This again can take many months, and even longer for individuals/institutions based in other countries. This could be due to:

  • Different regulatory requirements by client country.
    • This may impact one country more than another due to different regulations, country risk ratings, sanctions/ watchlists, etc.
  • Different processes for providing documentation
    • Including documents in foreign language requiring translation.
    • Differences in certifying or authentication.
    • Different formats used such as PDF, scans, handwritten notes.

As their clients can be in different countries, DWS (like other Investment Managers) needs to navigate the specific regulatory environment of the client’s country to facilitate on-boarding. Until on-boarding is complete, DWS cannot begin to generate revenue, which means investment managers cannot begin earning a commission.

Getting on-boarding wrong can have dire consequences, such as reputational damage, regulatory fines or even imprisonment. Therefore, the customer on-boarding process must not only be a good experience for customers and the asset manager, but also provide assurance that the regulatory requirements meet the quality expected.

The multi-regulatory environments, multi-lingual data provision and manual back and forth communication with clients greatly increases the time to on-board, the risk of errors in the process, the risk of loss of data, and traceability of records.

From the client's point of view, they would have to repeat the process with other investment managers as well as service providers like custodians, banks, who are part of the mandate set up, even if the documents and checks are the same

The Problem Statement

How might we more efficiently on-board institutional customers, both in Singapore and abroad, so that we can legally begin to service them confidently?

What they are looking for

A prototype solution(s) that:

  • Collects and ensures quality of the data in context to the specific country regulations.
    • Raises compliance and regulatory issues early so that they can be addressed in a timely manner.
    • Can connect with existing workflows (e.g. Salesforce).
    • Ensures real time authenticity and legitimacy of the information provided.
    • If possible, gives the client the benefit of a single on-boarding platform.

There are no restrictions on the geographic location of the problem solvers who may choose to apply to this challenge. However, the prototype needs to be demonstrated in Singapore.

Eligibility Criteria

You, (or any of your teammates, if you are participating in the Challenge as a team) must not be a current employee of (a) DWS, or (b) any other organisation who is involved in administering or organising the Challenge (including IMDA).

For full details on this challenge please see the SG:D Open Innovation Platform website.

Terms and Conditions

For full details on this challenge please see the SG:D Open Innovation Platform website.

How to Apply

To apply for this challenge please see the SG:D Open Innovation Platform website.

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