Home' Superfunds : Superfunds August 2017 Contents team, software vendor or third-party administrator. But this does not absolve
them from their duty to ensure their fund has the right technology in place.
In order to meet their statutory obligation to act in members’ best interests,
trustees must oversee the management of their fund’s IT environment with
To do this, they must first ensure they understand the vital role that
technology plays in meeting the current and future business needs of
their fund. Trustees have an obligation to educate themselves about the
key trends shaping the super landscape and the tech capabilities needed
to flourish within the current ‘digital revolution’. They must develop a
greater appreciation of the relationship between tech capabilities and
key deliverables, such as big data and analytics, personalised member
experiences, automation, cost efficiencies, seamless real-time integration,
and augmented member offerings from third parties.
To help super trustees ensure their fund’s IT environment can meet the
challenges and opportunities of the digital age, there are seven key tech
questions trustees should be asking their IT providers:
1. STRATEGY: DOES THE IT ENVIRONMENT SUPPORT AND ENABLE
THE FUND’S CORE BUSINESS?
Super trustees should begin by asking their IT providers whether the fund’s
technology solutions are capable of supporting the current and future
business needs of the fund.
Trustees need to know their IT provider has an architecture roadmap in
place that is clearly aligned with the business strategy and growth ambitions
of the fund. There must however, be budget allocated to deliver this
roadmap, and to keep operating platforms and software up to date.
Trustees also need to be assured their IT provider is actively monitoring
trends. An innovative IT provider is likely to be prototyping new technologies
that better realise the fund’s business objectives. They will be across
developments in artificial intelligence and robotics, and be looking at ways
these tools could be applied to enhance product and service delivery, as well
as fund administration.
In the pursuit of core business objectives such as data quality and cost
efficiencies, trustees must ensure their fund’s IT environment can support
straight-through processing, automation and modern integration approaches.
Finally, trustees should ensure the fund has the necessary IT talent—either
in-house or outsourced—to achieve current and future business objectives.
2. CYBER SECURITY: WHAT MEASURES ARE IN PLACE TO SAFEGUARD
THE SECURITY AND PRIVACY OF MEMBER DATA?
Cyber security is one of the key challenges facing super funds in the digital
age. The potential for cybercrimes, such as identify fraud, is increasing as
more data is exchanged in real-time with third-party providers. The likelihood
of privacy breaches is also increasing as funds seek to provide member and
adviser self‐service portals, as well as mine and link member data with data
from external sources for the purposes of analytics. Despite the serious
business risks posed, a recent KPMG report, entitled Cyber Security: the role
of boards, found that more than two‐thirds (67 per cent) of boards have
not undertaken cyber security (or information security) training in the last 12
Trustees have a duty to keep abreast of cyber security challenges facing
their fund and to ensure sufficient measures are in place. Regardless of
whether the IT environment is in‐house or outsourced, trustees must know
where and how their member data is being used and stored, and whether
security policies and protections are frequently updated in order to stay
ahead of the threats. Super funds must have the cyber forensic capabilities to
detect fraudulent behaviours and prevent security or privacy breaches before
they occur. In the event of a breach, there must be an appropriate incident
response plan as well as capabilities to produce a documented chain of
evidence to find out exactly what happened and who was responsible.
3. SCALABILITY: CAN THE IT ENVIRONMENT BE SCALED TO MEET
THE EVOLVING BUSINESS NEEDS OF THE FUND?
As more super funds come under increasing pressure to gain economies of
scale through mergers and acquisitions, a key question trustees should ask
Superfunds August 2017
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