Data

Giving FIs The Edge With Better Data Access

The problem financial institutions (FIs) have with data, Worldpay’s VP of Integrated Payments, Data and Fraud Products, Nicole Jass, told PYMNTS in a recent conversation, isn’t that they don’t have it — they and the world are literally awash in data at this point. The problem is lacking the right access to relevant data.

“It’s a lot of manual pulls from a lot of different sources in these organizations,” Jass noted.

That also means it’s far from available at a moment’s notice — when data is often needed — and, in many cases, is incomplete, insofar as it’s always inward-looking. Some FIs, particularly smaller ones, often lack access to the outside data streams needed for proper benchmarking.

“So, organizations can see improvement, but it can be hard to tell if that is because of something they are doing specifically internally, or if it is a reflection of a larger trend,” said Jass.

It’s a problem Worldpay realized they could build the tools to fix, with their iQ portal serving as a natural home for the toolbox.

The DataEdge  

The toolset Worldpay built is called DataEdge for FIs. According to Jass, it’s designed to give banks and credit unions total visibility into their card portfolios through a single dashboard.

“This is really built for FIs to get their hands on the data they need at a moment’s notice — and to make sure that data is accessible across all their portfolios,” she said.

Not only accessible but also able to be manipulated by users. Data streams can be broken down by BIN or by cardholder group or by merchant category, so that anyone signed into the platform can both navigate through the data and interact with it as necessary. Beyond the internal data, Jass noted, FIs can also tap into intelligent benchmarking data to compare their performance to other categories of issuers.

Secure and Simple Access

An easy point of navigation is a start, Jass noted, but it’s not sufficient to meet the needs of their client base. The solution needs to be secure, of course, given the amount and granularity of the available banking data. At the same time, however, it also needs to be fairly simple to get into, since users can’t tap into the benefits of a system they can’t figure out how to access.

The solution for that, the executive said, was to enable access to DataEdge tools within Worldpay’s iQ platform —  a cloud hub that clients were already interacting with, meaning that no new passwords or access habits needed to be learned.

At the same time, she said, it allows Worldpay to secure the system with its own internal mechanisms, so it can take full ownership of the toolset — and the data it contains.

Thinking Past One-Size-Fits-All

The DataEdge tool, Jass noted, is primarily a piece of architecture upon which a host of future services and insights will be built.

“The next pieces to add, then, are additional data sources — other information that can help issuers understand their cardholders and how they spend across the clients we process payments for,” she said.

The tool is built to continually support those additional data sources and layers. The bigger picture is about making the tool multifunctional — because when it comes to data, the real answer is that there are no “one-size-fits-all solutions.” Different users need different things, Jass noted, and that doesn’t just mean different FIs; it means different user groups within the same FI.

Some are simply looking for a more detailed data feed to which they can apply their own tools, she said. Others are looking for a mechanism to create and view data visualizations that are easy to understand. Some are looking for benchmarking data or information about a really specific BIN.

Simplicity — and providing it across a number of data streams — is a complicated business. What Worldpay hopes to do with the DataEdge architecture, Jass said, is to make it a simple way to create as many uses for their data as they need.

“What everyone is looking for is a way to do things better and more easily,” she pointed out, “without having to invest a lot more time.”

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