Metrics Man: BNY Mellon CIO Suresh Kumar

Page 4

Page 4
Page 4

Metrics Man: BNY Mellon CIO Suresh Kumar

Page 2

Page 3

Page 4

Measuring Success
Today, Kumar oversees a technology operation that employs 13,000 and spends $2 billion annually. He has been on the Sifma technology management committee and chaired the Finra technology advisory committee. He reads voraciously, follows a few thousand Twitter accounts on his Apple iPad Flipboard, and has a busy RSS feed on Google to boot. It is crowdsourcing knowledge, he says, and it’s all for free.

His management style is described as metrics-driven, bordering on metrics-obsessed. Want to make a business case to him? Come with numbers or don’t come at all. His favorite saying is, “How do you measure success?” It’s not enough to ask people if they use NetX360. He needs to measure adoption rates, and usage amounts, and what screens customers go from and to, and how much time they spend on each. He even has his assistant go through his old calendars and measure how much time he spent on each task so he can delegate accordingly. “If you can get through Suresh,” says Mayer, “the rest is easy.”

A love of metrics should serve him well in his ongoing project to tame the bank’s massive amounts of unstructured data. There is further insight to be mined about how and when customers use his technology that just hasn’t been discovered yet. He wants to chart bad user experiences, because when an institution is conducting tens of thousands of transactions a day, a 99.7 success rate that used to leave a bank smiling still produces thousands of flubbed transactions. Paradoxically, he’s also working on making structured data available to customers through an unstructured interface. People prefer the unstructured search box of Google, for instance, over a page with dozens of dropdown input menus.

Other current projects include collateral visibility and optimization, and a continuation of the tri-party reform platform that got him noticed in 2011.

“When I think about how old this institution is, and how many things it has seen and survived, it’s very important to me that I have something to do with continuing the tradition,” he says.

In his spare time, he rides with a group of hardcore cyclists, putting 50 to 100 miles on his bike in a weekend around the roads of New Jersey. It’s better than the gym, which he hates, because he can focus on what’s immediately in front of him, and on keeping up with the pack. Surrounding yourself with strong people, he says, helps you to be stronger.

Karen Peetz feels the same way.

Fundamental Data: Suresh Kumar

Name and Title: Suresh Kumar, senior executive vice president and CIO, BNY Mellon

Hometown: Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India

Current Residence: New Jersey

BNY Mellon Assets (as of December 2012): $1.4 trillion under management, $26.2 trillion under custody

Size of IT Department: 13,000

Education: BS in technology, Indian Institute of Technology at Madras; MBA, Indian Institute of Management at Ahmedabad; MS in computer science, New York Institute of Technology

Hobbies: Bicycling and reading

Favorite Book: The Most Powerful Idea in the World: A Story of Steam, Industry and Invention by William Rosen

  • LinkedIn  
  • Save this article
  • Print this page  

Only users who have a paid subscription or are part of a corporate subscription are able to print or copy content.

To access these options, along with all other subscription benefits, please contact [email protected] or view our subscription options here:

You are currently unable to copy this content. Please contact [email protected] to find out more.

You need to sign in to use this feature. If you don’t have a WatersTechnology account, please register for a trial.

Sign in
You are currently on corporate access.

To use this feature you will need an individual account. If you have one already please sign in.

Sign in.

Alternatively you can request an individual account here: