Case Study

Application Risk & Availability

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Customer Challenge

A European Tier 1 bank approached Citihub following an infrastructure failure that had caused an outage of its single-dealer FX portal. In addition to identifying and rectifying the issues that triggered the outage, the bank sought to conduct a detailed review of all applications and infrastructure supporting its global FX and Rates trading business.

As the technology for both businesses had evolved organically, there were some doubts as to whether the systems had been fully optimised, not only from an availability perspective, but also in terms of performance. Anecdotal evidence suggested that latency was spiking significantly around key market events, leading to complaints from customers. The bank therefore sought to gain a better understanding of the technology supporting its business flows, how certain infrastructure components were being shared across business lines, and identify areas that would help improve both the performance and resilience of its trading systems.

How Citihub Helped

Using the company’s tried and tested Application Availability Assessment (AAA) methodology, Citihub began by collecting all pertinent information relating to the relevant applications. The information-gathering exercise detailed everything from incoming feeds and core infrastructure supporting the bank’s applications, performance and utilisation statistics, architecture diagrams and service level agreements, all the way through to plans and policies governing configuration management, resiliency tests, security policies, release management, production acceptance tests, reboot cycles and more.

This data was then analysed to identify all critical risks relating to availability, performance and IT security. Citihub then developed a detailed plan to remedy those risks and prioritise actions. And the bank was able to embark on a series of targeted IT investments that not only improved the performance of its systems, but also helped drive business.

Client Benefits

Detailed analysis of existing technology assets
Within any organisation, the specialised roles and responsibilities of distinct teams – across business, application and infrastructure owners – do not always lend themselves to a detailed knowledge of interdependent processes and technologies. Citihub was able to use its tried and tested AAA methodology to see beyond these limits and collect all relevant details – so the bank had the raw material for better decisions on how to improve its trading platforms.

Comprehensive understanding of risks
Thanks to the objective data collected by Citihub, the bank was aware of every critical risk factor relating to the availability, performance and security of its applications. The detailed report addressed everything from connectivity and network architecture issues, through to end-of-life hardware and client onboarding issues.

Effective implementation of sustained improvements
With a detailed understanding of both the nature and criticality of risks, and the ease with which they could be remediated, the bank was able to assess where to target IT investments for the most effective results. And those results didn’t just translate into a better IT environment. They also helped the bank drive business performance by delivering an enhanced level of service to clients and attracting more order flow as a result.

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