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Business Analytics

How Trifacta Has Driven Innovation in Financial Services From Its Beginning

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July 18, 2016

“If data analysis ever hopes to scale at the rate of technologies for storing and processing data, the lives of data scientists are going to need to get a lot more interesting.” Sean Kandel, Trifacta Co-Founder and CTO

Once upon a time, Trifacta Co-Founder Sean Kandel worked as a data analyst on the Energy team at Citadel Investment Group. Every day, he faced what you are likely facing: most of his time was spent doing the boring and tedious work for cleaning and preparing data, and not enough time was spent doing the fun part of the job, solving business problems. Here’s Sean in Harvard Business Review talking about the pain of data wrangling.

Sean’s resolve to improve the life of data scientists was so strong that he took the extraordinary step of getting a Ph.D. at Stanford University, where his research centered on user interfaces for database systems. There, Sean designed a product named Wrangler, which evolved into the company today known as Trifacta. Along the way Trifacta has found customers in many different sectors; but from the beginning, Trifacta was built with financial services data analysts in mind. We like to say financial services is in our DNA.

Regulation and Compliance: The Heart of Financial Services Data

Every financial services regulatory reporting team has to create reports that demonstrate compliance with the law, as well as any intra-bank agreements. The teams are often small, and the pressure high, the data sources constantly changing and expanding. Most often, everyone’s still working in Excel. We love Excel too, but it has its limitations.

When it comes to financial services, non-compliance isn’t an option. One of Excel’s most serious limitations when it comes to financial services is that only one person at a time can work on the same file. As the organization evolves, the institutional knowledge about how to transform data can walk right out the door. Given the risks of non-compliance, one of our clients, a global investment leader with nearly $1 trillion in assets, took out an insurance policy to ensure the creator of their compliance data portal wouldn’t leave! Of course, every employee is valuable, but when only one person knows how to transform data, what are you overlooking?  What business opportunities aren’t you surfacing?

Focus on What You Love: Solving Problems With Data

Feel like the pain of data preparation and cleaning is getting worse? You aren’t alone. Big data, stored in Hadoop clusters and managed with tools like Cloudera, are bringing many more sources of data into your purview than in the past. Your executives expect answers even faster than they did just a few years ago. In fact, Forrester reports that over 80% of an analyst’s time is spent just doing the preparation work required to start analyzing the data. Our experience suggests that could even be the low end.

Trifacta was designed to help reduce data cleaning and preparation time by enabling better up front assessment of data sources, smart extraction that learns preferences over time, and providing easy to use, intelligent, beautiful visualizations that improve data understanding and speed up insights.

Here are just a few of the ways Trifacta has helped our financial services clients make data science more fun, and more effective:

  • Data preparation times reduced by up to 15x with automated and predictive data preparation easily shared throughout the organization. Imagine being able to see what’s in a file before importing it.
  • Ensure compliance by preserving source data and data lineage
  • Up to 80% faster reporting speeds, as you and your data science teams can now focus on analysis instead of data preparation.
  • More users leveraging Hadoop investments with Trifacta’s easy to use, visual interface that doesn’t require R, SQL or a traditional ETL process to get value.
  • A real 360 view of the customer from all available sources, enabling better marketing, sales, and customer service operations from the same data set.
  • Transformational insights from a group approach to problem-solving vs. individual file analysis.

Financial services companies are at the heart of our business. Co-Founder and CTO Sean Kandel and Financial Services Product Lead Steven Totman went on camera to talk about Trifacta in Financial Services. They’ll show you how The Royal Bank of Scotland has been using Trifacta to transform their team’s data analysis capabilities. You can also read more about how the Royal Bank of Scotland is using Trifacta here.