An integrated asset management platform is considered vital for automating transaction processing, but many firms are still using disparate applications, according to a survey of US investment executives conducted by New Jersey-based QED Information Systems.
The survey of 34 mid- and c-level investment executives found that 88% of responds feel it is 'very important' or 'somewhat important' that their business uses a comprehensive portfolio management platform.
However, 74% of respondents said their companies were not using an integrated platform. Nearly half of these firms, aware of the potential for errors associated with shuttling data through multiple applications, intend to upgrade or replace technology in 2004.
Keith Brodhead, VP, sales at QED Information Systems, says that despite the industry delay in moving to T+1 settlement, most asset managers see the benefit of an integrated solution that provides a pathway to straight-through processing.
"Asset managers recognise that automating the settlement process is the most effective method of reducing operational costs and minimising risk," says Brodhead. "Integrated portfolio management solutions that include support and customisation services provide the greatest technology return on investment while allowing companies to automatically complete reconciliation."
The survey also found that 91% of respondents spent the majority of their 2003 technology budgets on maintenance and updates to portfolio management systems, instead of investing in strategic long-term improvements. However, 62% said that functionality will be the most important factor when they do upgrade, while over half of respondents (59%) said that portfolio management systems need to be 'black box' solutions requiring minimal ongoing operational support.