Performance key for financial firms as big data, security become priorities

By John Gentry, Vice President of Marketing and Alliances –

As is the case with most industries, finance houses are fully enveloped in the big data craze. These firms have seen myriad benefits from deeper application of the data they store and manage, necessitating the creation of entire departments aimed solely at managing and working with data. More information means better insights on investments and financial practices for clients and better predictive models for how people need to spend and manage their money. The headache for financial services firms, though, is the amount of data they need to store and protect, and the impact that’s felt if that data even briefly becomes unavailable. Regulatory compliance issues plague the industry, as well, with hackers, disgruntled employees and accidental exposures leading to massive data breaches. eeping all of that data both available to employees and safe from breaches demands an IT infrastructure that performs without issue.

Limiting downtime, latency

With the amount of money in all forms that goes through major financial organizations on a daily basis, downtime for those firms is the kind of thing that results in highly substantial losses for the company. Clients and customers need access to their account information and assets at all times, and when performance problems lead to unavailable data and operational delays, the impact is extensive. Financial organizations are inherently complex and rely on equally intricate infrastructures that integrate applications and other components from multiple vendors.

Monitoring performance benchmarks and expanding visibility into infrastructure performance gives teams the capability to manage IT proactively. Rather than guessing the cause whenever latency kicks up or an application falls offline, IT teams need to be able to identify direct causes to enable prompt resolutions. The decisions made at financial services firms and the information and analytics they store control millions of dollars – and that’s at a small company. Steps need to be taken to ensure preventable performance and availability impacts are eliminated.

Maximizing existing infrastructure

Like any other industry, financial services needs to keep its operational expenditures under control, but the complexity and potential cost of infrastructure required to manage data in a way that provides optimal services for employees and customers is immense. However, simply making huge CapEx investments every few years on the best and latest data-center technology isn’t feasible. Financial services companies need proactive support of existing infrastructure to make overhead IT spending as efficient as possible. The system-wide inefficiencies and other application performance problems that create unacceptable latency can be solved with solutions to manage infrastructure performance. They frequently go undetected, though, as teams prefer an investment on some new component or hot trend they incorrectly believe will solve their problems.

Big data’s pervasiveness in financial services has given rise to significant potential value and profits, but the management of this information requires an infrastructure that supports the company. It’s the IT teams who embrace their core responsibility to ensure consistent performance who will enjoy the greatest results from such developing initiatives.

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