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Financial Chief Data Officers Making Advances in Data Management and Compliance but Over Half of Manual Processes Remain

Survey of 100 financial services executives provides insights into their top data management initiatives and challenges

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., March 22, 2021 –  Risk data aggregation is the top compliance concern for chief data officers (CDOs) within financial services firms, with 88% of these organizations devoting 40% or more of their total data practice budget to compliance functions, according to new research launched ahead of the leading data management event for financial services, FIMA.

The survey, conducted by WBR Insights among data and information technology executives within the financial services sector and sponsored by InterSystems, highlights that financial organizations  are allocating significant portions of their budget to compliance initiatives, and that 54% of those surveyed further revealed that at least half of these functions are still performed manually within their organization.

Eighty seven percent of executives say they are implementing strategic data management initiatives in 2021 to further key business objectives, such as boosting profitability and improving customer outcomes. Many firms report that AI-driven analytical cloud services are at the forefront of these initiatives, with such solutions enabling financial services firms to sift through enormous volumes of data and gain a single view of accurate, consistent, and trusted real-time data.

The research also provides CDOs with insight into how their peers are leveraging new data management technologies and architectures, such as data fabrics, automated governance, machine learning, data lineage, and blockchain to enable them to meet their myriad business requirements.

“Financial services organizations are striving to gain a competitive edge, deliver more value to customers, reduce risk, and respond more quickly to the needs of the business,” said Ann Kuelzow, global head of financial services at InterSystems. “This requires leveraging data to its full effect – and the research shows that there is still more work required on defensive data management and automating compliance functions, as well as the more strategic “change the bank” types of initiatives that could have a significant impact on their operations.”

Other key findings include:

  • 70% of CDOs say risk data aggregation is the primary regulatory concern within their IT departments, while 69% say “Know Your Customer” is their primary area of resource consumption.
  • 69% of CDOs say their organizations have applied data lineage as a data governance technique, and 52% have applied crowdsourcing techniques.
  • 63% of CDOs are pursuing an analytics-driven business strategy through an offensive approach to data management.

“Advances in modern data management technology are ensuring our financial services customers can continue to meet compliance and risk management initiatives, while also enabling them to implement strategic initiatives that generate new revenue streams, enhance customer experiences, and improve operational efficiencies,” added Kuelzow.

Review the full research at:

About the methodology

WBR Insights surveyed 100 data and information technology executives in a leadership role within their organization. The respondents are evenly split between the type of organizations they work for, with 25% of respondents representing an asset management organization, a hedge fund, an insurance organization, or an investment bank.

About FIMA

Financial Information Management (FIMA) launched in 2005 and is the leading data management event for financial services in the United States. Born as a reference data management event, FIMA has quickly grown to cover so much more as different kinds of data are creating new risks to manage and opportunities to capitalize on. Each of our events hosts more than 425 guests from more than 145 companies with three days of content and 12 hours of networking. Each year FIMA-hosted sessions and discussions are led by top data management professionals, all covering topics that are of fundamental importance to your enterprise-wide data management initiatives. We’re dedicated to helping you make an ever increasing impact on your business, year after year. For more information, please visit

About WBR Insights

WBR Insights is the custom research division of WBR (Worldwide Business Research), the world leader in B2B-focused conferences. From research based whitepapers to benchmarking reports, infographics and webinars, our mission is to help global institutions across a variety of industries inform and educate their key stakeholders while achieving their strategic goals. For more information, please visit

About InterSystems

Established in 1978, InterSystems provides innovative data solutions for organizations with critical information needs in the healthcare, finance, and logistics sectors and beyond. Our cloud-first data platforms solve interoperability, speed, and scalability problems for organizations around the globe. InterSystems also develops and supports data management in hospitals through the world’s most proven electronic medical record, as well as unified care records for health systems and governments through a powerful suite of healthcare data integration solutions. The company is committed to excellence through its award-winning, 24x7 support for customers and partners in more than 80 countries. Privately held and headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts, InterSystems has 25 offices worldwide. For more information, please visit


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