Japanese Firm Needs to Understand U.S. Marketplace
A Japanese research and services firm
is developing a system for underwriting and managing credit risk
for small business loans. The firm needed to incorporate
best practices into its products and services.
We developed a structure to describe the US market, including market
segments, products, delivery and sales systems, credit management,
profitability and growth drivers, and securitization/infrastructure.
Through secondary research and interviews with a range of executives
and vendors, we identified key factors of success and how they are
implemented in the US.
The client is now using the results to develop and package
its services to its client banks. The client has successfully attracted
partners to proceed to the next level of implementation.
Neglected Operations Needed Upgrade and
Several bank financial operations involving 300 staff were
seriously under-performing due to a combination of poor management,
inefficient processes, obsolete systems, and lack of customer service
Each component (securities processing, fund accounting, real estate trust operations)
was analyzed for process flow, customer service/accountability, productivity,
and hardware/software functionality and suitability.
New processes and new systems were implemented through self-funding, and total
costs were reduced by 20% while customer satisfaction improved. Further,
the streamlined operations delivered major costs savings during a merger
by absorbing a larger function.
School District Needs Clarity in Financial
Schools have complicated financial reporting, and most of the
financial systems are oriented towards compliance and financial regulatory
reporting. Reports were not adequate for managers and Board members
to make appropriate decisions. It was also impossible to get meaningful
detail on certain “hot button” topics like travel, conferences,
Our first task was to download the financial information, scrub and label the
data appropriately, and create an excel spreadsheet with filters, subtotals,
and pivot tables. Each Board member and top staff was given a summary level
report and user-friendly tool to research items of interest and create summaries
at various levels. Secondly, we developed a public presentation to explain
in understandable terms the nature of school financing to the board and the
The Board was able to make more enlightened decisions and felt more confident
that they grasped the full context. Further, the community gained a much
better understanding of the situation and was more supportive during a financial