Jupiter Asset Management has been an FE fundinfo client for some 15 years. Compiling factsheet performance data is much easier than it was back then, says Gergana Kabakova, Jupiter’s Senior Performance Reporting Analyst.
Gergana joined Jupiter, one of the UK’s leading fund management groups, eight years ago. Her primary monthly task of retrieving, compiling and cross-checking fund performance and other data was slow, stressful and resource intensive.
“The process was very different from what we have currently. At the beginning, we just had to cross-check the primary share class and assume the rest was fine,” admits Gergana. Jupiter and its global investor client base have grown significantly since then, putting greater demands on the analyst team.
"With regulation becoming more stringent over the years, we now have to issue marketing information for all share classes. So we had to start checking more data. That meant we had around 600 share classes at the same time. It was impossible to check in two or three days," says Gergana.
Why supporting technology needs to evolve with more stringent regulation and a growing business
Even as the workload evolved, the internal processing did not. Two or three members of staff still had to log onto FE Analytics and retrieve the data they needed. Although FE Analytics had served Jupiter well in terms of data coverage and an easy-to-use interface, the increased need for information and bespoke reporting on a regular basis at a share class level required a new approach.
"Initially, we were going onto FE Analytics, manually adding the funds, the benchmarks, performance tables, ratios and holdings data," Gergana says. "And we had to repeat that early every month, just at our busiest time."
The workload has increased too since Jupiter’s 2020 acquisition of Merian Global Investors. Data automation was required. FE fundinfo account director Axel Torstenson suggested that Gergana try FinXL, which had been introduced to allow users to feed FE fundinfo data directly into their spreadsheets.
"Axel introduced us to FinXL when the product was quite new, around five or six years ago. It sounded like a good solution. The idea of adopting FinXL was to cross-check the data itself to ensure the published data was correct," says Gergana.
Access to quality whole of market data tailored to specific business requirements
As an initial trial, she started with just one account, with herself as the main user. Setting up FinXL for her exacting needs took a little time, but the results were worth it. "With Axel’s help and lots of training sessions, we both customised it for our needs. We set up a report that is easy to refresh every month," she says. Once the team was accustomed to the product, the results were obvious to see.
"The workload dropped significantly, especially as I did not have to login to FE Analytics each time to build up the tables, copy and pasting manually. All work that is prone to error disappeared completely," says Gergana.
Saving time and resource
A task that used to involve two or three people now involves just one - Gergana - and can be completed in two hours. Even when errors occur, she says they are easy to spot, especially when internal and FE fundinfo data is mismatched over bank holidays or leap years.
Switching to working from home was easy, too, when the first lockdown was implemented. Tailoring FinXL to Gergana’s and Jupiter’s exacting reporting needs saved time, resources and cut error rates, ensuring data is right and on time, every time.