Use low-code to integrate multiple systems while keeping them flexible
December 14, 202211:01 am
3 min read
A diverse economy like that of the United States has a diverse financial services system. It often seems the financial regulatory apparatus is equally multi-faceted. Some half-dozen federal agencies each oversee a part of the financial system, and some them have counterparts at the state level. It can all add up to inefficiency and regulatory needs falling through the cracks.
“It’s no secret, we have a fairly complex financial services market,” said Kyle Thomas, the industry lead for public sector financial regulators at Appian. “What that leads to is a fairly complex financial services regulatory space. The US stands alone in that it has a combination of state and federal regulatory agencies looking after the financial services world.”
Thomas said that the layers of regulatory agencies put a lot of “cops on the beat.” It also offers the opportunity to streamline the agencies’ technology requirements base through common applications and data sharing for functions they have in common. For example, what one agency learns about a regulated entity need not stay confined in that agency.
“By sharing that with other agencies,” Thomas said, “we learn a lot about the interdependencies and the interrelationships between the types of participants in this financial services market. It makes a better kind of 360 degree view.”
Blake Templeman, chief product officer at Groundswell, saw this theory in action in working with the Conference of State Bank Supervisors (CSBS). Each supervisor must perform examinations, investigations and complaint adjudication.
“They didn’t want to just replicate the systems that they had,” Templeman said. “They wanted to change the game completely.” The challenge was to integrate individual applications into a system or systems. Members had some functions in common and other functions specific to only some members.
“We were able to establish a system, first of its kind,” Templeman said. It was an opt-in system. And at this point, almost every state is using it for their bank examiners, or their financial institution examinations, across all of the different financial institutions in the United States.”
It helps not only the regulators, he noted, but also the regulated entities because they are presented with common interfaces and less duplication of effort.
It streamlines things, he added, but it also lets each using organization tailor the system to its own state’s particular laws and regulations. He said a key to both the integration and the flexibility is use of a low-code platform.
“Because it’s a low code platform, so easy to build upon to your exact requirements, not only are they all using it, but that just makes it so much easier to integrate with each other and share information as well,” Templeman said. Now, he added, the FDIC, Securities and Exchange Commission, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and entities such as Ginnie Mae have adopted the system, with support from Groundswell.
Thomas said it’s important to understand that at both the state and federal levels, agencies with closely related missions have been collaborating for decades. Now, he said, “technology is the thing that’s finally catching up. What the folks over at CSBS have proven as possible, is that by putting a piece of technology between all these agencies, it breaks down those barriers. Suddenly, it becomes a lot easier to work together.”
Such integration is spurring modernization throughout the financial oversight agencies. He cited mortgage loan portfolio analysis, where the volumes of cases make it impossible to review hand.
“You can have a machine pull some of those data points off of those documents,” Thomas said, “and feed that data into a model. And that model can spit out the four or five loans that a human being needs to actually review.”
The Federal Reserve Board of Governors is looking to fashion a system similar to that of the CSBS, Templeman said, using the Appian low code platform. This allows rapid development in short sprints while reducing the technical debt of legacy systems, he said. Moreover, it aids in the weeding out of dated, unneeded processes, applications and data.