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Vitria Software Lets Bank Speed Transactions

RBC Financial Group is using BusinessWare 4.2 to get to straight-through processing--completing transactions the day after they occur rather than the current three days.

The RBC Financial Group, parent company of the Royal Bank of Canada, wants to handle more customer transactions as straight-through processing--that is, complete the transaction the day after it occurs.

Morteza Mahjour, senior VP of enterprise information and technology services at RBC Financial Group, wants to start implementing straight-through processing for some banking transactions in January. The bank expects to have its wealth-management arm, RBC Investments--which serves pension-fund managers, money managers, and equity traders--using straight-through processing, by mid-2004.

Most banks and equity traders still complete a transaction within three days after the trade, rather than one day. Mahjour says completing transactions faster will be a competitive advantage. Buyers who get notifications of trades being completed the day after they commission them will be more-satisfied customers, he predicts. "We're figuring out how to remove irritants to the customer," he says.

In order to get to straight-through processing, however, Mahjour has implemented the BusinessWare 4.2 integration package from Vitria Technology Inc. It has replaced the hand-off by the transaction application's front end, formerly made to Automatic Data Processing Inc. software, with BusinessWare connectivity. BusinessWare's ability to track and move transactions can be tied into RBC's workflow and business processes in the future, Mahjour says.

RBC Financial Group is Canada's largest company based on asset value. It employs 60,000 people across five lines of business, including insurance, capital markets trading, wealth management, and banking. Each business has its own applications and transaction flows, Mahjour notes. RBC may now track a transaction across business units and multiple applications, he says.

That wasn't possible with the trading front ends tied to the ADP software, which moved transaction information into back-end systems. "With Vitria in the middle, it's more efficient. We will be able to avoid using that old piece of technology," Mahjour says.

He anticipates the day when straight-through processing will be the norm rather than the exception for all types of transactions at RBC Financial Group. Says Mahjour: "We want more straight through processing on mortgages," as well as stock trades and currency transactions.

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