How to remedy data silos

Patrice Trichon, Head of Marketing, Client Reporting and Digital, Brown Brothers Harriman and Kenneth Lamar, Partner, at Lamar Associates LLC explain the dangers of putting your data in silos and some quick fixes.

Fund Operator Editor POSTED ON 9/23/2022 8:01:49 AM

Patrice Trichon (L), Head of Marketing, Client Reporting and Digital, Brown Brothers Harriman and Kenneth Lamar, Partner, at Lamar Associates LLC.

Data silo pain points

It’s well known that data siloes are a huge pain point in many organisations so what can they do to remedy this?

Patrice Trichon, Head of Marketing, Client Reporting and Digital, Brown Brothers Harriman and Kenneth Lamar, Partner, at Lamar Associates LLC both say that they can be unavoidable but there are quick fixes and long-term strategies to fix them.

In Clear Path Analysis’s report, Fund Technology, Data & Operations, North America 2022, industry leaders from companies including Capco, Lamar Associates, and Pzena Investment Management look at the best ways fund operators can avoid these silos.

"Moving away from data silos requires a large investment and time. Data is an enterprise asset and does not belong to any one division. Even in government, data is very powerful.”

How to prevent data silos

Data silos are often built around functions in the business that have historically not needed to share data.

Silos can also commonly develop from siloed technology. i.e., if the business adds a system to solve a problem or meet growth needs, then it creates another silo. 

“This is a real challenge for large firms,” says Lamar. “Moving away from data silos requires a large investment and time. Data is an enterprise asset and does not belong to any one division. Even in government, data is very powerful.”

A 2022 EY survey said that data was the driver for much business growth. “Data is emerging as the strategic currency of the digital age, with shared data intelligence and insights unlocking the value of operational, customer and market data.”

“In order to begin this transition, it needs to start on the cultural side,” he added. “That is either through customer demand or through regulation.”

Data silos occur naturally as each department collects and stores its data for its own purposes and Trichon says she has experienced them from a variety of different angles over her career.

“We knew that we had a data problem due to the siloed environment. I have spent the better part of the last six months helping these teams to organise the data so that is meets the business rules, store procedures, consistency, ownership, and regulatory requirements.”

“Coming into my current role, I thought I was going to build the brand and create thought leadership,” she said. “But what I really spent my time on was partnering with data technology and data governance departments. This is because we have a tremendous need to be able to share data in a consistent and controlled environment.”

This, she added, didn’t matter whether it was for their clients, prospects, or consultants. “We knew that we had a data problem due to the siloed environment. I have spent the better part of the last six months helping these teams to organise the data so that is meets the business rules, store procedures, consistency, ownership, and regulatory requirements.”

Trichon added that they are now going through an exercise sharing their own data, as well as market data. “The days of free-flowing data are over. We have to have licenses and must ensure that our clients, consultants, and intermediaries are authorised to accept and use this data. The world has changed.”

To read the interview in full, and see more from the report, please click here.

 

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