Financial corporations are facing waves of regulatory and customer demands while trying to manage sweeping organizational changes, prompting a major shift in how companies invest in and deploy technology across the enterprise.
Ernst & Young LLP's Financial Services Office has formed its Information Technology Advisory Services group to provide firms with strategic IT counsel to effectively solve complex business issues and comply with new regulatory mandates.
"IT leadership is being called upon to build systems that enable compliance and risk officers to gather and aggregate information in real-time, monitor risk and compliance levels throughout the company, and make informed recommendations to their superiors," said John Weisel, a Principal in Financial Services at Ernst & Young LLP. "Information technology program initiatives have been accelerated over the past year as many firms are realizing that IT must become the engine that drives change throughout an organization and ultimately sets the stage for long-term growth."
While boards and operating committees navigate the complex relationship between a firm's IT strategy and its ability to help an organization achieve its business objectives, the profound change sweeping the financial services industry has significantly elevated the role of technology within firms. At the same time, financial services IT professionals are being forced to manage more intense scrutiny of their IT decisions and spend in response to significant changes in regulatory and customer demand. Ernst & Young's recent "Opportunities in Adversity" survey showed that one in three respondents from financial services companies indicated that in the last year IT infrastructure metrics have been subject to greater scrutiny from their business.
Weisel added, "Management teams need to understand that technology will help their companies to effectively manage cost-cutting mandates, new compliance demands and a myriad of risk management and security issues. IT among progressive financial services companies has evolved from an enabler of day-to-day business to a vital component of a company's ability to effectively manage change in a new era of financial services."
Ernst & Young LLP's Information Technology Advisory Services group works with financial services firms to:
- Assess their technology portfolio and identify gaps and weaknesses;
- Commission comprehensive reviews of systems and infrastructure to identify security vulnerabilities;
- Educate their board, audit and operating committees on the value of IT investments and its correlation to business outcomes;
- Provide an IT framework for transparent reporting practices and collaborative communication across the organization through enterprise wide information management and analytics.
John Weisel has over 25 years experience providing advice to financial services firms in strategic areas, including information technology strategy, enterprise cost management, and customer relationship management.
Before joining Ernst & Young LLP, John was a senior executive with a major consulting firm where he held various leadership roles in its global banking and capital markets business, including leading its supply chain and strategy practices. Prior to that, John was also a principal with a bank and thrift consulting firm where he specialized in providing strategy, regulatory and merger and acquisition advisory services.
Weisel and a team of over 1,000 highly-skilled information technology professionals across the Americas are able to help financial services clients on a range of issues pertaining to IT strategy, risk, finance, operations, compliance, security and data management.