How do you satisfy customer demands for flexible, agile service
While preserving a satisfying user experience and strict regulatory compliance?
Delivering trusted desktop software as-a-service for better performance and flexible costs
As told by Richard Laugesen, Head of Strategic Vendor Management, SimCorp
In partnership with Michael Skøtt, Associate Director, Technical Practice Specialist and Cloud Advisor for SimCorp, Kyndryl
Investment firms worldwide use SimCorp Dimension software to manage their customer portfolios. While these firms highly value SimCorp’s flagship software, owning and running data centers are a costly, growing distraction from their core business.
SimCorp understood that financial services markets were shifting from traditional licensed on-premises software models to software-as-a-service (SaaS) models to reduce operational burdens and improve agility for the end customer. When he took over as Head of Strategic Vendor Management at Simcorp, Richard Laugesen committed to SimCorp providing their customers with better, more flexible experiences. And while pivoting to SaaS was essential, the move was not without risks, including assuring continued smooth operations and uptime for customers.
By providing a SaaS solution, we recognized that we could take the operational headache away from our customers and step up to being a trusted service provider rather than just a vendor.”
Our vision was to provide a seamless service to investment management firms, so that they can focus on their core business without having to think about owning and operating IT infrastructure.”
Meeting highest standards in a highly regulated industry
Operating in some of the most regulated market segments, SimCorp’s customers often need to comply with multiple local, regional and global regulations.
In adopting the new as-a-service software delivery model, SimCorp would need to support the highest standards in availability, security, privacy, cyber-resilience, and recoverability.
“Given the industry we serve, it was vital to create a truly world-class platform for our new SaaS model,” says Laugesen. “As well as meeting or exceeding all of the major global security and privacy standards, we targeted an industry-best recovery time objective and recovery point objective of just 15 minutes.” SimCorp tests all recovery objectives as part of upholding specific Security Level Agreements (SLAs).
In addition to finding a long-term cloud partner capable of meeting its customers’ stringent requirements around security and resilience, SimCorp wanted to ensure rapid onboarding and low-risk migration to the new SaaS platform.
“Our customers have customers in practically every time zone, so a non-disruptive migration and ongoing constant availability were must-haves from the operational perspective,” states Laugesen.
A resilient infrastructure that supports modern business models
Together, SimCorp and Kyndryl designed and built a standardized, automated, fully managed cloud landscape for its SimCorp SaaS Platform. Running on virtualized infrastructure in multiple top-tier data centers across four continents, the Kyndryl solution features cross-site data mirroring for resilience and rapid recoverability.
Each customer’s production environment features two clustered Oracle databases for high availability, replicating asynchronously via Oracle Data Guard to a third database for disaster recovery purposes.
Kyndryl and SimCorp have successfully migrated 20 customers from a wide variety of on-premises environments to SimCorp SaaS Platform, using a detailed playbook and rigorous project management services from Kyndryl Consult to ensure a smooth, low-risk process.
“The Kyndryl solution gives us the control and security of private cloud combined with the flexibility, scalability and cost advantages of public cloud,” says Laugesen. “Working with Kyndryl continues to be a very positive experience: The team always has our backs and steps up when there’s a need for innovation.”
Kyndryl delivers considerable flexibility. In the five years since go-live, the compliance scope has been expanded from Europe-only to include Canada, the U.S., and Australia. Both private dedicated connectivity options and flexibility in the number of processor cores per Oracle database instance for selected customers have been introduced as well.
Clients who migrate to SaaS typically see a performance boost of 30 to 40%. Our clients are very happy with the solution because it offers 100% adherence to SLAs without any in-house effort."
What progress looks like
Thanks to the agility of the cloud model, SimCorp clients can ramp services up and down as business needs change, controlling costs with greater transparency and predictability.
SimCorp SaaS Platform enables clients to eliminate non-core activities such as hosting, operating, maintaining, and upgrading the solution. Instead of worrying about software or hardware, they can focus on faster operations and better customer service.
Clients don’t need to buy, install and configure hardware and software in their own data center — and guided by Kyndryl and a best-practice process framework, they can be up and running in less than one week.
The SimCorp SaaS Platform meets or exceeds numerous global, regional and national standards around security, compliance and privacy, including ISO27001 and NIST SP800-53, and gives clients peace of mind through quarterly disaster-recovery tests.
Established in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 1971, SimCorp serves more than 300 of the world’s leading asset managers, fund managers, asset servicers, pension and insurance funds, wealth managers, central banks, sovereign wealth funds, and treasury firms. Its flagship solution, SimCorp Dimension, is used to by customers to manage more than USD 19 trillion in assets.