Problem: Top 5 Global Bank grew substantially over the past 15 years through mergers and acquisitions resulting in an extensive amount of system integrations. As they merged their trust platforms, a number of incorrect fee calculations resulted. These problems dated back to pre-merger client accounts across multiple platforms and, in some cases, required hard copies and application codes to be re-defined.
Solution: A significant and focused fee reconciliation project was required with a need for senior level experience and system expertise. Oakbrook Solutions assembled a team of consultants to ensure that the project ran on target with the right amount of attention to detail. Our team consisted of a Senior Project Manager, a Senior Project Manager/Fiduciary Trust Attorney, and 6 Senior Business Analysts. One of the primary strengths of our team members was their attention to detail and their experience working with a variety of trust platforms. At the project management level, our consultants had backgrounds working with legal trust agreements and other documents to make sure that the client was made whole and that the reconciliation followed the letter of the law.
Problem: Top 50 Regional Bank made a trust platform conversion decision that Oakbrook Solutions participated in. As the trust transition began to move forward, the client quickly realized that many of the ancillary platforms were written in Cobol (a mainframe programming language used primarily in the 70s and 80s). As a result, they needed consultants with trust conversion experience, as well as Cobol specification writing and programming experience.
Solution: Oakbrook recognized that the trust conversion experience was as important, if not more important than the Cobol language background. Our experience working on similar interface related projects had shown us that programmer/analysts that did not have the trust experience were unable to relate the business need to the program requirement causing cost overruns and ongoing client problems. To address this challenge, Oakbrook provided trust experience through a blend of technical analysts and Cobol programmers led by an experienced Technical Project Manager and successfully transitioned data and function to the new platform.
Problem: National top 10 Retirement Services Firm had been growing both organically and through several acquisitions for a number of years and in turn had developed an expertise and employee capacity deficit. Additionally, new retirement plans were coming onto the books and the staff did not have the capacity to handle the (mutual fund) data conversions. Simultaneously, efficiencies were being established that needed to be documented and new deals with each mutual fund company had to be negotiated. In conjunction with the plan conversion and operations activities, the client also needed assistance in establishing its own broker-dealer.
Solution: Oakbrook Solutions assembled a team of consultants to work hand in hand with existing staff for operational support, documentation activities, and strategic consulting. A Senior Business Analyst was added to handle the data conversion through the use of various in house tools and a Senior Project Manager was brought in to negotiate new rebate arrangements with various mutual fund companies. We also placed a Senior Strategic Consultant to assist in establishing a broker-dealer. This consultant engaged mutual fund companies to enter into sub TA agreements and created operational workflow to support the broker-dealer functions. Throughout the engagement, Oakbrook staff fully documented the new procedures while supporting day to day activities.
Problem: Top 10 Regional Bank recently transitioned their trust platforms and did not have documented procedures. Back-office operations employees on different desks were processing the same transactions utilizing different codes and in turn affecting reporting and statement output.
Solution: Oakbrook Solutions supplied a team of consultants that had system knowledge combined with hands-on operations experience. This allowed our consultants to not only document the procedures but implement process corrections utilizing industry best practices in order to increase efficiencies throughout the organization. The client has now expanded the analysis to other areas of operations by applying the same approach which has resulted in consistent, unified procedures throughout the organization.
Problem: Client was having challenges finding the right high-end talent to assist with regulatory changes being levied by government agencies. The most pressing issue, due to time and staff constraints, was cost basis reporting (CBR).
Solution: Client had recently moved to Agile methodologies and wanted to integrate CBR development and release delivery work streams using Agile. Oakbrook Solutions provided a Senior Project Manager and Business Analyst to lead the CBR work stream and ensure a smooth transition to the new regulatory environment. The Senior Project Manager was quickly moved into a role leading the Agile scrum team.
Problem: Client has numerous satellite offices servicing various businesses and was having an issue staffing retirement services plan administrators to facilitate national growth. The client had roles staying open for 6 to 9 months and the HR groups were experiencing challenges with finding the right people for these roles and locations.
Solution: Relying upon our proprietary employment database as well as online strategies to research, identify, and fully vet the right candidates, we were able to fill the open roles assigned to us within 90 days. This included background checks and our standard on-boarding processes. The client has since expanded our services, utilizing our approach and industry experience, to other areas of their organization to fill additional roles.
Problem: The Trust Company insourced their back-office while converting to a new accounting system resulting in large out of balances, client statement issues, and operational problems due to conversion errors and inexperience with the new system. This created a sense of urgency across the organization and required immediate attention.
Solution: Oakbrook Solutions’ consultant resources worked directly with senior management and were thoroughly involved in the day to day functions to provide post conversion clean-up efforts. Our consultants made recommendations for and participated in remedial actions. Oakbrook identified pain points and staffing gaps and implemented procedural changes which strengthened the operational workflow and staff. Oakbrook successfully provided staffing support services, including the addition of an Interim Operations Manager to oversee daily operations and provide support during this volatile period while we did an extensive search to identify and hire their permanent Senior Operations Manager. We also recruited full time operations staff to support their day to day operations. These new personnel hires greatly assisted the client in developing a cohesive operation which in turn improved client relationships.