FIS Blog

The Modern Way to Win at Corporate Actions Management

Adam Brill, global head of product, Strategy and Business Development, FIS

June 25, 2019

For financial institutions, the management of corporate actions is traditionally something of a zero-sum game – a cost of doing business, not a competitive differentiator. Today it’s easier than ever to reduce both the cost and the pain of the process, by passing as much as you need to a leading player in the field.

No broker or investment manager ever claimed or wanted to be the best at corporate actions. And today, many organizations are happy to let technology do most of the hard work. Automated solutions, after all, are very good at managing the typically complex, convoluted and labor-intensive corporate actions process.

However, while highly specialist technology solves a very specific business problem for financial institutions, it can still present challenges of its own. State-of-the-art software may be fast at processing and easy to use, but it also needs careful maintenance, with servers to support, background processes to manage and frequent updates to implement.

The good news is that technology now provides a solution to this problem, too. Cloud-based hosting services offer a modern alternative to licensed on-premise software and allow technology providers to host and maintain solutions for clients in their own secure data centers.

Over the course of the current decade, the hosted or Software as a Service (SaaS) operating model has steadily gained in popularity, making it possible to not only automate corporate actions management, but also leave the associated technology requirements to an industry specialist. And that makes adopting an automated solution much more of a business, rather than a technical, decision.

These days, you can outsource not only the management of IT for corporate actions but also the day-to-day processing of events. By providing a whole team to manage corporate actions on your behalf, innovative Business Process as a Service (BPaaS) solutions take SaaS to a whole new level.

All of which is not such a big leap for financial institutions – no more than a natural progression in the drive to standardize and centralize where possible, even if it means offloading a function.

It all comes back to the reality of corporate actions as a zero-sum game that, in itself, offers little competitive advantage. From bank to bank, no organization interprets the terms of an action differently to any other. Most of the work involved, while certainly specialist, involves mundane but time-consuming tasks, such as checking and tidying up the wording, grammar and spelling of event announcements.

Why not hand over all these details to a team of experts who make it their business to specialize in corporate actions?

Historic concerns about the security of such cloud-based services are now far behind the industry, with providers adhering to increasingly strict standards for storing and exchanging data. And in the light of a host of new data protection regulations, the managed service model keeps your solution constantly up to date with the latest requirements.

It’s therefore no wonder that, since launching the XSPrisa SaaS solution in 2011, FIS has seen its own corporate actions managed service gain momentum, as even larger clients opt for hosted technology.

XSPrisa gives them all the power, agility and reliability of our licensed application – minus the headaches involved in deploying, maintaining and operating the software.

So, with lower costs and more time for your bottom line, you could say that a managed service for corporate actions turns the zero-sum game into a win-win situation.