The role of data and technology in the investment management industry is evolving rapidly. How do businesses leverage such new advances efficiently and to maximum effect?

The role of data and technology in the investment management industry is evolving rapidly. How do businesses leverage such new advances efficiently and to maximum effect?

Peter Sherriff
Peter Sherriff

Director of Product Strategy, Asia Pacific, Charles River

Peter Sherriff Peter Sherriff

Director of Product Strategy, Asia Pacific, Charles River

Insight: Why Should Super Funds Strive for a ‘Whole-of-fund’ View?

Superannuation funds will benefit if they can gain a comprehensive perspective on their assets.

All Insights

The investment management industry knows that harnessing the power of data can generate greater value for the firm and drive competitive advantage. Investment managers must prioritise the most valuable use cases, master data governance, technology architecture and business efficiency to unlock actionable insights, which is a significant technical challenge.

Recently, at the 8th Investment Data & Technology Summit, hosted by Fund Business, we discussed the challenge of managing the evolving role of data and technology in investment management with fellow industry leaders. We explored how to cut-through the hype, leverage disruptive new influences such as artificial intelligence (AI), and harness the power of data and technology for growth.


Navigating Trends and Hypes: Transformation in Practice

We discussed the practicalities of building an infrastructure capable of delivering on the promise of data. Different types of architectural constructs – data lakes, lake houses, vaults and mesh or fabric – come with their own pros and cons. However, investment management firms don’t have to embrace only one approach – hybrid arrangements can work well.

Importantly, infrastructure and governance must be inclusive. Building technical structures requires a pool of talented engineers, working closely with investment teams to build a data system that delivers purposeful insights. Having an intermediary who is able to articulate the investment teams’ requirements to technologists may assist in minimising the time to business value.

There is also widespread recognition that not all data is equal. Identifying the most important data – and building structure around it – is a critical task. Following this, determining if the remaining data may still have value across the organisation is important as well. Firms must also have the flexibility to rapidly assess and secure new sources of data that could provide insights and advantage.

AI technologies such as large language models (LLM) and natural language processing (NLP) have much to offer, but identifying the right use cases, rather than falling for the hype, is crucial.

Applications of these advances already in use include solutions that ensure insights secured from data is accurate, complete and reliable. For example, machine learning can be used to flag anomalies in data as part of a broader data verification program. Sentiment analysis is another area of significant interest as well as using AI tools to increase productivity.


Foundations for Data Architecture

The challenge is to build a data architecture that users can trust and include solutions that ensure insight is reliable. Implementing architecture that makes it easier to track and manage data consumption patterns will make it easier for users to access the right data to solve key business problems.

To achieve this, investment management firms need a long-term vision for the evolution of their architecture, a robust implementation strategy and supporting governance framework.

In an area that is evolving rapidly, it will be important to move forward with agility. Data architects must be able to respond to immediate business needs while staying focused on longer-term strategic objectives. As a result, legacy technologies may no longer be fit-for-purpose. While many traditional data solutions provide core capabilities such as aggregation, they struggle to deal with unstructured data. Open API standards have much to offer here. Cloud native architectures help to improve resilience, agility and scalability, which support productivity, efficiency and the adoption of new initiatives in areas such as AI.


Data Centralisation

Many investment management firms are struggling with the issue of data centralisation. Decentralisation has the potential to create an additional data management burden, but centralised platforms that pull in data and then deliver information to data consumers is resource intensive.

Nevertheless, a centralised platform can deliver economies of scale, as a single, enterprise-wide source of truth. The solution may be a cloud-native data warehouse built on an extensible and scalable model to capture the breadth and depth of data generated across the organisation, as well as from external sources. In addition, enterprise data management platforms provide interoperability, lineage and governance, regardless of how data is used.

A ‘Whole-of-fund’ Case Study



A leading fund shared their experience of a project they undertook to implement a data governance and management function as it sought to build a whole-of-fund data view and provide data services to their investment team.


The plan was to deploy an enterprise data platform to source, master, consolidate and curate investment data, essentially removing data management tasks from the individual teams and providing data as a service. Coding and advanced analytics would be retained within the investment team but supported by the centralised data function.

The fund argues that the best way to implement such an initiative is through a bottom-up approach based on use cases. Engaging the business is crucial, but key building blocks such as security-level exposures and asset class views will demonstrate value.


The fund’s platform moved into production within less than a year. It is operating with a team of five, supported by a project team, and working in partnership with State Street on an ongoing basis.

Learn More:

Insight: Why Should Super Funds Strive for a ‘Whole-of-fund’ View?

Insight: Podcast: Achieving a ‘Whole of Fund’ View

Leveraging Partners

Suppliers, vendors and other partners will play a key role in helping investment management businesses build the data architectures they need now and into the future. However, many businesses want fewer but deeper partnerships with the aim of simplifying their operating environments. Those partners will also need to have strong relationships with one another to reduce operational friction and support an architecture capable of providing an enterprise-wide single source of truth.

State Street’s Alpha® Data Platform is fully open and interoperable, enabling the integration of both client data and third-party sources. It provides real-time data with transparency into data availability, definitions, usage and lineage, along with the scale and flexibility to meet the demands of today’s shifting markets.


The material presented herein is for informational purposes only. The views expressed herein are subject to change based on market and other conditions and factors. The opinions expressed herein reflect general perspectives and information and are not tailored to specific requirements, circumstances and / or investment philosophies. The information presented herein does not take into account any particular investment objectives, strategies, tax status or investment horizon. It does not constitute investment research or investment, legal, or tax advice and it should not be relied on as such. It should not be considered an offer or solicitation to buy or sell any product, service, investment, security or financial instrument or to pursue any trading or investment strategy. It does not constitute any binding contractual arrangement or commitment of any kind. State Street is not, by virtue of providing the material presented herein or otherwise, undertaking to manage money or act as your fiduciary.

You acknowledge and agree that the material presented herein is not intended to and does not, and shall not, serve as the primary basis for any investment decisions. You should evaluate and assess this material independently in light of those circumstances. We encourage you to consult your tax or financial advisor.

All material, including information from or attributed to State Street, has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but its accuracy is not guaranteed and State Street does not assume any responsibility for its accuracy, efficacy or use. Any information provided herein and obtained by State Street from third parties has not been reviewed for accuracy. In addition, forecasts, projections, or other forward-looking statements or information, whether by State Street or third parties, are not guarantees of future results or future performance, are inherently uncertain, are based on assumptions that, at the time, are difficult to predict, and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual outcomes and results may differ materially from what is expressed herein. The information presented herein may or may not produce results beneficial to you. State Street does not undertake and is under no obligation to update or keep current the information or opinions contained in this communication.

To the fullest extent permitted by law, this information is provided “as-is” at your sole risk and neither State Street nor any of its affiliates or third party providers makes any guarantee, representation, or warranty of any kind regarding such information, including, without limitation, any representation that any investment, security or other property is suitable for you or for others or that any materials presented herein will achieve the results intended. State Street and its affiliates and third party providers disclaim any warranty and all liability, whether arising in contract, tort or otherwise, for any losses, liabilities, damages, expenses or costs, either direct, indirect, consequential, special or punitive, arising from or in connection with your access to and / or use of the information herein. Neither State Street nor any of its affiliates or third party providers shall have any liability, monetary or otherwise, to you or any other person or entity in the event the information presented herein produces incorrect, invalid or detrimental results.

To learn how State Street looks after your personal data, visit: Our Privacy Statement provides important information about how we manage personal information.

No permission is granted to reprint, sell, copy, distribute, or modify any material herein, in any form or by any means without the prior written consent of State Street.