Today’s post was written by Ramin Safai, chief technology officer at Jefferies Group.
As a global investment bank, Jefferies has a steadfast focus on ensuring that its clients succeed in today’s digitally enabled markets. We are also keenly aware technology changes quickly afford us an opportunity to outmaneuver larger institutions encumbered by bureaucratic processes. This is especially true when we provide data-driven investment products and execution to clients. The Microsoft 365 E5 tools we use complement our nimble approach, helping us to provide better insight and expertise to investors, companies, and government entities.
To provide exceptional service to our clients, we need access to real-time data from many sources. Today, our rapidly expanding core of data analysts combine data into user-friendly, predictive dashboards. They use Microsoft Power BI as their visualization standard to present data to our banking teams. Seamless data access and collaboration means we pitch ideas before our competition, ensuring our clients are the first to benefit from new opportunities. Our investment advisors also use the dashboards to visualize information in new ways, providing better insight into an investment’s potential for the client.
Our experts in the field access and share sales data from their iOS and Windows 10 devices with analysts at the office to jointly create complex and compelling pitch documents more efficiently. They also collaborate on documents using OneDrive. With these tools, we are better equipped to address challenges in the core investment banking industry where service fees have come down, adding pressure to deliver more with less.
In the past, it would have been expensive and time-consuming to collaborate with clients securely, setting up new servers in our demilitarized zone, and opening firewall ports. Today, we share our dashboards with clients, providing them the ability to dig deeper into the data insights featured in our proposals. We use built-in rights management capabilities to limit downloads to Excel and to disable printing, giving us confidence to share the data. Providing this service wasn’t even on our roadmap. This built-in benefit only took a week to enable securely and is a great win for us and our clients.
To further boost mobile productivity, we’re enabling OneNote for everyone. With the combination of OneNote and OneDrive, sales reps can share client notes with colleagues, keeping everyone up-to-date on pending new business and helping to develop the personal relationships we are known for. We’re using Microsoft Intune to answer another request from our mobile employees: seamless and more secure access to Office apps on the road. When we can keep our company data-protected and employees can access data in real time to collaborate from any device, anywhere, that’s empowering—and it’s a cornerstone of our modern workplace.
Microsoft worked closely with us to deliver a security solution that meets our requirements. We are standardizing on Azure Information Protection, a cloud-based solution that we use to classify, label, and help protect our documents and emails. We’ve decided on a multi-tenant environment with the option to provide and manage our own encryption keys. Features such as Customer Key and Customer Lockbox in Office 365, Key Vault in Azure Information Protection, and Cloud App Security, which monitors configurations and policies relating to our cloud apps, add to the level of security in our environment. And it’s excellent news for us that Microsoft is accelerating compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation. This, and the ability to store data in the country of its origin with the new Multi-Geo Capabilities in Office 365, will help us address our data residency requirements for European clients.
At Jefferies, our IT team’s role is to show the business what they can do with technology and let them imagine a world that’s different from today. As we continue to unlock creativity in our digital workplace with Microsoft cloud services, we’ll empower our employees to innovate and enhance our reputation for introducing leading-edge products and services that put clients first—always.
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