Transforming the financial paradigm

Hamish Barwick

In addition, customers can browse bond pricing lists. In December, the company added cash flow forecasts for the next five years, giving customers future dates when they can expect to receive money into their bank accounts.

"Like many businesses today, we face a tremendous amount of demand for accurate data. Making sure there is a continued focus on evolving the quality of retained data and that there are user-friendly tools to put that data at the fingertips of those who need it in a timely manner is very important," Dixon said.

To cater to customer demand for a responsive mobile website, the site automatically resizes for tablets and smartphones. Next on Dixon's list is the development of an Android and iOS app later in 2014.

"This app will mean we can target messages to clients rather than sending out mass emails," he said.

"Website usage indicates the Android platform is gaining momentum among our client base. It's on equal footing with iPhone so we have to consider an app for both platforms."

In late 2012, Dixon also embarked on a core network and infrastructure upgrade so that FIIG's systems could cope with the growing demand for fixed income securities and research.

Previously, the company ran its infrastructure in-house in smaller data centres, but has now moved that infrastructure into two tier 1 data centres in Brisbane and Sydney.

Dixon said it chose Australian-based data centres, rather than a private cloud, to host data due to the tight regulations governing the financial services industry locally.

"We have used private cloud services for our development environment but it's always safe to assume regulation is going to increase rather than decrease so we've erred on the side of caution," he said. "For security reasons, it's far better for us to store client data in-house."

In order to help new clients open an account with the company in a more timely fashion, there are plans to offer a real-time customer verification service on the website from March.

At present, the sign-up process can be time consuming because it involves various identity checks.

"We've built identity verification into the system and we also look up information on the Australian Securities and Investments Commission to validate an organisation's registration details," Dixon said.

He claimed this will enable a new customer to open an account within a "matter of minutes" rather than the process taking several days. Stringent security processes are also in place so that cyber criminals cannot use the service to create fake accounts.

"Our business is all about protecting the assets of clients, whether it is personal information or their financial investments so they need to have confidence they are held in a safe pair of hands," he added.

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