AFTAs 2019: Best New Technology Introduced Over the Last 12 Months (Data and Data Services)—MDSL

MDSL-NewTech-AFTAs2019

How does a bank get new users permissioned and provisioned with data quickly while ensuring accurate invoice reconciliation? In the past, it could take a week to get a new employee the data they need, but the winning initiative in this category—a new service developed by UK data inventory management software vendor MDSL in partnership with data vendor FactSet—could reduce that to just a few minutes.

The service—eBonding Procure to Pay—allows users to automate much of the process of permissioning and rolling out FactSet services to individual users within a firm. When a new employee joins a firm, or an existing employee wants to procure additional datasets, instead of sending emails back and forth to their market data administrators and the vendor, they now can use MDSL’s portal to obtain internal approval for their desired data, to order the data from FactSet, and to receive confirmation.

“This was driven mainly by customer interest from large, forward-thinking firms that want to drive automation. We had customers getting frustrated with logging into lots of different vendor portals, and entering information on new staff into each one manually,” says Alistair Brooker, senior director of MDSL’s MDM product. “Also, we run a managed services division, where we run those data processes on customers’ behalf, so we were also feeling that pain.”

MDSL had already used the eBonding approach for several years to manage procurement and inventory management in its Telecom Expense Manager business, and in 2018 identified how it could extend the practice to market data. FactSet developed a series of APIs for services with specific product codes, which MDSL mapped to its inventory management software, ensuring users get only the products that match their user profile.

MDSL is beginning proof-of-concept rollouts with three large banks, and aims to expand it to services from other vendors, which Brooker says will also benefit from it, because it will reduce manual work and errors, and allow vendors to spend less time on administration and more time on strategic account management with clients.

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