Microsoft introduces institutional client platform

Source: Microsoft

Microsoft Corp today announced the launch of the Institutional Client Platform (ICP), a solution for buy- and sell-side firms that uses customer relationship management (CRM) and client analytics to provide greater visibility into client activity across financial product silos.

The ICP enables firms to provide improved client service by seamlessly integrating the entire communication infrastructure including instant messaging (IM), e-mail and the trader's turret system. Microsoft and its partners have developed a platform that brings together all front-, middle- and back-office activity into a single view of the customer, providing valuable insight into a customer's trading positions across the various product silos, and enabling firms to cross-sell additional suitable products.

This launch phase of Microsoft ICP focuses on distribution, one of the most pressing areas for buy- and sell-side firms, and includes the following services: client on-boarding, event management, CRM, client classification, client analytics and integrated communications.

Leading financial services technology providers have worked with Microsoft to develop and implement ICP including GaleForce Solutions Inc, Information Management Group Ltd (IMGROUP), IPC Systems Inc and Lab49 Inc.

The first implementation of ICP went live in September 2007 at UK stockbroker Execution Ltd. "We are delighted to have been the first to deploy Microsoft ICP," said Mark Adams, development manager at Execution Ltd. "Since implementation, we have benefitted from improved client relationships, more efficient research production and distribution, and better client accounts management through business intelligence. More importantly, the whole enterprise has benefitted from an integration of our CRM and communication systems."
The ICP platform utilises Microsoft Dynamics for its CRM capabilities, Microsoft Office Communications Server for the integration of communications, and Microsoft Office SharePoint Server, Microsoft Office PerformancePoint Server, Live Search and Microsoft SQL Server for client analytics functionality. Together, these technologies provide an integrated sales desktop that any client-facing staff within a financial institution can leverage.

"With Microsoft ICP, we wanted to provide institutional client-facing staff with a solution that would provide a 360-degree view of their clients' activity across the product silos," said Ian Warford, director of Securities and Capital Markets at Microsoft EMEA. "They are now able to identify more quickly the more profitable clients, suggest additional products and improve overall customer service."

In addition to Microsoft Consulting Services, the following Microsoft partners provide industry knowledge and expertise in specific areas relevant to the development and implementation of the ICP:
  • GaleForce Solutions Inc, a leading provider of customer relationship management software for the financial services industry, will provide support in the CRM area.
  • IMGROUP, an award-winning provider of end-to-end business intelligence, data warehousing and collaborative solutions, will be responsible for client analytics functionality.
  • IPC, a leading provider of indispensable communications solutions, will be responsible for the integration of the communication infrastructure.
  • Lab49, a consultancy firm that specialises in building advanced technology applications for the financial services industry, will be responsible for the delivery, integration and customisation of the platform for customers of ICP.

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