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Enterprise-Scale Bespoke Cloud Developments at Ballard Chalmers

In this blog, we take a technical look at two examples of enterprise-scale bespoke cloud developments that we have undertaken. Both clients are from the financial sector which is an industry that we have a lot of experience in.

In both cases, the client is the subject matter expert who worked closely with our software experts to design the system, and in each case, we have developed, support and manage the system.

The ID Register

After the success of the fully bespoke build of the Fund Administration System Capital Tracker by Ballard Chalmers, a cutting-edge cloud enterprise application developed for managing Private Equity funds, Ipes* continued their longstanding relationship with Ballard Chalmers on the build of The ID Register, an online investor onboarding platform that helps make key processes such as fund launches faster, easier and more cost-effective. It centralises fund subscription information, conducts Due Diligence and Know Your Customer (KYC), and also provides Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) and Common Reporting Standard (CRS) tax reporting to the relevant jurisdiction.

The technology behind it is primarily ASP.NET MVC, C#, SQL Server, TSQL, AngularJS, Bootstrap, SSRS and is a modern responsive web application hosted on Azure. It has many functional areas such as:

  • User Management, Permission Profiles, Login via LinkedIn, Invites, Notifications
  • Profiles (Entity Types, Entity Details, Lead Entities, Ownership and Control, Invites)
  • CDD
  • Evidence requirements, document storage and certification
  • Risk Rating
  • Sanctions Screening
  • Billing
  • FATCA and CRS (Classification, Registration, Investigation, Reporting)
  • Universal Investor Subscription (a very detailed questionnaire)
  • API access for external tools and partners
  • Administration subsite (Administration Tasks for IPES staff, Due Diligence Triggers, Permissions).

The ID Register Account

Enterprise-Scale Bespoke Cloud Developments - The ID Register FATCA and CRS Dashboard

*The ID Register was later taken over from IPES by APEX

Square Marble: Mia

Square Marble Technology (SMT) is an innovative financial technology company with 25 years’ experience in building fintech software. With its mission to ‘square the circle’ by pursuing perfection in every aspect of their customers’ financial management, the company is breaking new ground by using business intelligence as the foundation of its application development in ‘order to cash’ software.

In 2014 the SMT team challenged themselves to create an intelligent business application for order to cash management, re-engineering their existing successful second-generation application, ‘Ero 57’. The envisioned third-generation SaaS platform was “Intelligent Account Management,” or Mia®. Mia would use data analytics to support innovative business process transformation in order to drive growth. It would provide transparency across legacy processes, transforming the way that C-Suite leaders can capture and interpret data. Equipped with rigorous intelligence, the platform would optimise key operational areas to turn traditional risk into opportunity with data-driven clarity.

SMT’s extensive planning for Mia recognised the need to outsource custom development expertise. Ballard Chalmers has a solid reputation in the sector, with a strong track record and experience that would be needed. SMT enlisted Ballard Chalmers for the fully bespoke build of this enterprise financial operations system.

Working together with SMT, Ballard Chalmers delivered the bespoke SaaS Mia platform with state-of-the-art security and back-up.

Some of the technology (that we can disclose) behind Mia includes:

  • User interface developed in React and Redux
  • Data requests made over an ASP.NET Web API application running in IIS
  • LINQ to SQL and Entity Framework used extensively for server-side data requests
  • Microsoft SQL Server database
  • .NET for File Import and Business Process Automation applications
  • Rabbit MQ used for communication between the web site and file import/business process applications
  • Microsoft Power BI for Business Intelligence reporting

Mia’s capabilities include:

Risk Management: Mia integrates with credit agency data and combines this with her internal scorecards to produce dynamic trade limit and risk decisions that are relevant to your business.

Group Relationships: Flexible relationship tables enable users to create customer groups to manage exposure, credit limits and tasks at a parent level. Multiple parent levels can be created so that users can manage group relationships in any way that is required.

On-Boarding: Mia integrates with ID&V and credit rating agencies to deliver an onboarding decision in under 5 minutes which can be pushed to ERP using our API’s so that customers can start trading immediately.

Credit Limit Management: Manually over-ride Credit Limits with limits of authority approval permissions so that you can set temporary and Trade limits above the scorecard credit limits when increased business opportunities arise.

Customer Trading Status Management: Manage the customer trading status using dynamic decisions based upon overdue invoices, legal events and TED v credit limit.

Workflow Management: Set the parameters and Mia will assign users automated tasks for completion whilst giving them access to the data and documents that they need to secure payment quickly and easily.

Dispute Management: Set the rules and Mia will automatically assign disputes so that users can quickly and easily move the dispute to resolved for credit or collection. The Mia daisy chain process will open a new task when a previous task has been completed, such as dispute closed raise credit will automatically raise a task for the billing team to raise a credit note.

Task Management: Use task management to assign tasks to appear in colleague’s activity lists for completion. Task completion is analysed for user performance statistics.

API’s: Give users access to critical information in real-time as changes are made in source systems. Push the data via API calls to Mia services so that she is always up to date. Mia can also push changes back to your ERP and CRM in real-time.

Self Service Imports GUI: Import your data seamlessly into Mia using the import GUI. Easily map CSV, XML data file into Mia and manage any failures by exception using the GUI interface. The listening service will pick up and process files whenever they are placed into the sFTP and report back the import file success and the reasons for any failure so that you may easily reload.

Self Service Exports GUI: Export data seamlessly out of Mia using the export GUI and push to your sFTP.

The Mia State Change Engine: The state change engine will trigger tasks or communications 24/7 whenever there is a data change, a user update or a time increment.

Repayment Plan Module: Use the repayment plan module to manage customers that require more time to pay and to ensure that any missed payments are resolved immediately through task assignment.

Single Sign-On: Make it easy for users to access Mia through their desktop using single sign-on. No longer required to log in separately once you have logged in to your desktop.

SMS Module: Text customers through the workflow engine or from the desktop. Quick and easy to send a message in a few keystrokes. Great for SME sole traders and consumer customers.

Email communications: Deliver emails straight from the desktop and attach all of the key data and transactions to help customers to facilitate payment easily.

Credit Card: Integrate credit card options into Mia to make it easy for customers to pay online following receipt of a reminder.

Mail Integration: Integrate with mail fulfilment house by asking Mia to send all post communications as a file for delivery.

Microsoft Power BI Reporting: Mia comes with a data warehouse, so users can use Mia’s service desk to create new reports or use the suite of existing standard reports to gain performance insights. New metrics are constantly being added to help users make data-driven decisions. Publish reports using Power BI.

Data Modelling: Each new algorithm can be added to the Data Warehouse architecture and be used in the Mia scorecard engine to make data-driven decisions.

Multi-Language Comms Template Pack: Global businesses can communicate to customers in their local language. Select the customer language preference and deliver all communications to them in their local language. Language can be targeted per customer contact as well at the customer level.

Export to CSV: Export the transaction grid into CSV so that this can be shared with the customer by attaching to an email and importing their responses back into Mia as a mass-update.

Audit History: Mia stores all user and workflow activities to provide a full audit for reporting analysis.

Search: Use quick search to find an account in under a second.

Advanced Search: Use advanced search to create a new list of customers that share the same attributes such as all customers that have unapplied cash waiting for allocation

Document Integration: Integrate document store into Mia so that users and customers can access documents through a quick API call, so that they may have the information required to approve the payment.

Enterprises-scale bespoke cloud developments - Mia

Credit: Square Marble Technology via Mia website

Find Out More

If you are interested in finding out more, follow the links for The ID Register and Mia case studies or learn more about our development and delivery processes.

If you are interested in using this financial software, go check out The ID Register or Square Marble Technology directly.

 

Post Terms: Azure , bespoke development , Cloud , Cloud development

About the Author

Geoff Ballard

As Co-Founder of Ballard Chalmers, Geoff is the company’s CTO, directing technical strategy, overseeing technical consultants, managing larger development projects and ensuring technical delivery quality standards.

Education, Membership & Awards

Geoff graduated from the University of London with a BSc (Hons) in Mathematics and computing and a Masters degree in Database Management Systems. Additionally, he is a certified SQL Server Development, Microsoft Certified IT Professional (MCITP) and Microsoft Certified Technical Specialist (MCTS).

His professional memberships include Charted Engineer (Software), Member of the British Computer Society (MBCS), Member of European Federation of Engineers (FEANI) and Fellow of the Institute of Analysts and Programmers (FIAP).

 

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