October 2010

Performance improvement

We have performance and process improvement consultants to help design, manage and execute lasting change. Organisations engage our skills in operations, people, technology, finance and risk management to advise and implement - locally and globally. We also help your people to build the knowledge necessary to make change effective and sustainable.

In particular we can help you:

  • Ensure you are optimising your infrastructure investment including getting value from the right deals
  • Realise the intended benefits of outsourcing and offshoring
  • Source skills and technology from developing countries with the right locations and suppliers
  • Translate strategy into concrete process to deliver sustainable performance
  • Derive benefit from risk management and compliance spend
  • Utilise convergent technologies
  • Drive and manage growth

We tailor our approach to your business. This entails listening to you to understand your business issues. We also have the courage to be proactive and propose alternatives points of view - based on independent and challenging insights, facts and industry benchmarks.

Mitigate risky operations

We can assist you in making smarter risk decisions by helping you reinvent risk at the behavioural and cultural level.

Risk is essentially a question about balancing priorities. A risk assessment resulting in over-regulation is frequently cited as one of the critical limiting factors our clients face is struggle to enhance business performance. But is it regulation or how organisations have reacted to regulation that is the real challenge?

One of the most negative overhangs of the post Sarbanes-Oxley era is the corporate perception of risk as something that can be processed away through layers of silo-ed functions. How do you strike the right balance when addressing market or operational risk whilst avoiding losing a competitive edge? Once identified a new potential risk tends to raise additional concerns that seem to only add complexity, cloud accountability and obscure the upside of risk taking.

Indeed, risk will never be eradicated by this process. But our approach is to ensure that it will not be driven underground. This entails established an environment to support a type of risk-reward based performance model required to create lasting growth and value.

So how do you reinvent risk?

We believe that risk can only be reinvented by taking a long term view of a business. Long-term business success in this environment hinges on the ability to reinvent risk management both from of a process and cultural standpoint. We have found that the most successful organisations ignite their appetite for risk management followed by integration into a business strategy and culture so that all facets of the business consistently apply the desired risk thresholds.

This enables such organisation to make a risk assessment whilst still achieving optimal performance and compliance and avoid investing in redundant or ineffective functions, processes and technology.

Alternatively, organisations may continue to focus on efforts to "process away" risk and ignore the upside, hoping that risk avoidance will one day be a differentiator. However, we feel that such steps do not fundamentally succeed in addressing the symptoms of poor risk management as opposed to the root issues.

Managing risk

We understand how good risk management can benefit your business. Increasingly we are supporting clients in identifying, understanding and managing risk to help ensure an appropriate balance between risks and opportunities.

Success in this area invariably requires a structured approach in alignment with business governance. We assist businesses in designing and implementing governance and compliance programmes to ensure that the company continues to operate within the boundaries of relevant legislation and regulations.

This includes building a culture of doing the right thing. And this may be achieved without losing any competitive advantages or conceding unnecessary compromises. 

We can help if you :

  • Need advice on management performance and accountability
  • Need to improve stakeholder and regulator relationships and communication
  • Are exposed to market or operational risks require mitigating
  • Want to manage processes and mitigate inherent business risk
  • Want to establish a culture more receptive to "bad news" where you people are more protective to the brand
  • Want to free up valuable resource by de-layering risk and compliance processes
  • Want to reduce the incidence of compliance failure
  • Lack clear and measurable KPIs
  • Need procedures to identify and address complaints and breaches of legislation and internal processes
  • Need to achieve greater value for compliance spend


Is your business at a crossroad? The key challenges that businesses face today are the same issues that we at Sopica confront every day. They include creating and preserving value in a highly competitive environment, navigating a wave of new regulation, and motivating and taking care of key people.

Every day, we apply what we like to refer to as Connected Thinking on behalf of our clients. This may involve working either from within your own organisation to meet those business challenges and demonstrate true leadership or external consulting.

The Internet enables successful virtual partnerships. This makes geographic location a relative concern for our core business.

  • Convergence
  • Creating a sustainable business
  • Doing deals
  • Improving business performance
  • Managing crises
  • Managing people
  • Managing risk
  • Operating globally
  • Reducing costs
  • Reporting performance
  • Responding to change
  • Strengthening governance and regulatory compliance


The outsourcing age

Global outsourcing is thriving. We believe the trend is not merely set to continue but to expand and diversify. Following relative tentative steps with non-business critical operations and services, our clients are increasingly seeking to leverage both outsourcing and offshoring in areas that would not have been previously considered.

Indeed for many businesses it has weathered a storm to emerge with the potential to provide attractive potential competitive advantages. It has the potential to deliver value well beyond cost savings but only if managed appropriately. We can facilitate this by assisting your operation to access new talent and capabilities without compromising quality or security. Maximising business model flexibility is the goal.

Nevertheless, taking such steps occasionally involves risk and presents challenges. We encounter clients seeking consultation on cost benefit justification (i.e., to create a business case articulating the benefits being measured and delivered) particularly where they have limited experience.

Nearly all are able to cite an instance of outsourcing that did not go well. This occasionally leads to a negative perception about the challenging aspects of the outsourcing life cycle. In such cases We work closely with our clients to ensure that they avoid their first inclination - to merely blame service providers when projects fail. We find the main cause of failure is poor collaboration between service providers and customers.

Such challenges are set to intensify as the growing complexity of outsourcing from changes in the customer/supplier relationship to the emergence of new stakeholders and new governance models. There is growing evidence that leading outsourcing customers and service providers are shifting from traditional to collaborative business models.

We can help you rise to the challenge of collaborative partnering.

People and change

It is frequently reiterated that an organisation is only as good as it's people. In increasingly challenging and uncertain times this maxim has never seemed more appropriate. Yet there is always the danger of paying lip service to the quality of a workforce by being sidetracked by offshoring activities or technology innovation.

Getting the best from people at every level when there is constant change is the key to sustainable competitive advantage. Solid strategies, processes and technology alone do not deliver results. It takes people to accept, adopt, drive, and sustain the change to realise tangible impact. Success in business hinges on strategic agility and the ability to execute.

We can help you:

  • Structure your organisation with the right capabilities and leadership to execute the business strategy
  • Develop managers to understand, manage and own people issues
  • Implement change using the right people with the right skills in the right roles at the right time
  • Implement change without losing business continuity
  • Deliver lasting change by involving the people impacted and enabling them to drive and sustain the business change
  • Rejuvenate the organisation’s culture so that it becomes in itself a competitive advantage
  • Establish benchmarks for the efficiency and effectiveness of HR
  • Impose better controls and co-ordination of project management activities to implement programs more successfully
  • Engage and motivate a diverse workforce to focus on the right things and strive for excellence
  • Seek effective strategies for people development and growth


Improving business performance

We have expertise in assisting organisations improve their business processes to deliver quantifiable financial savings. We have succeeded in delivering process improvement on some of the most major programmes using methodologies such as 6 Sigma and CMMI.

Organisations engage our performance improvement consultants to help design, manage and execute lasting change. We draw on skills in operations, people, technology, finance and risk management to advise and implement - locally and globally. We also help your people to build the knowledge necessary to make change effective and sustainable.

In particular Sopica can help you:

  • Ensure you are getting value from the right deals
  • Realise the intended benefits of outsourcing
  • Run sourcing from developing countries with the right locations and suppliers
  • Translate strategy into sustainable performance
  • Derive benefit from risk management and compliance spend
  • Capitalise on the convergence of technologies
  • Drive and manage growth

We really listen to you to understand your business issues.

We also have the courage to propose alternative points of view - based on independent and challenging insights, facts and industry benchmarks.


Consumers and businesses are pushing hard and fast to accelerate and incorporate technological changes. We have particular expertise in integrating enterprises with technology, people and processes. By being engaged to assist with requirements analysis for a greenfield project or to improve what is already in place we are able to assist you.

Our main focus is to participate in corporate strategies using systems to support end-to-end financial and business processes. We also have particular strengths with integrating electronic trading platforms in markets as diversified as forex and derivatives to back-end business processes. Indeed, connecting and aligning front with back-office is increasingly perceived as being a fundamental means of reducing operating costs and improving the quality of service delivery.

Although may be implemented in a context as diverse as Treasury, Settlements or the Sales Desk the root business drivers are usually the same. Moreover, our analysis reveals a dramatic rise in total spending across the converging sectors: communications, finance, and technology, creating a burst of innovation.

Successful companies harness the opportunities around convergence and translate them into value creation. We assist our clients in achieving their corporate strategy of nimbly managing change by fusing state-of-the-art technology and process with a clear vision of the future.

How Sopica can help with your business strategy

We are technology focused only when the brief requires it. Technology and innovation should never be contemplated in isolation of the business context. A new and open business model is the way to manage convergence, realise its potential and enable sustainable shareholder value. By using such an open business model, Sopica can help you:

  • Realise new revenue opportunities without leaking profit
  • Integrate acquisitions rapidly without sacrificing value
  • Meet current commitments without compromising on going forward
  • Understand consumers without getting lost in data
  • Open up infrastructure and maintain security
  • Create open partnerships while protecting intellectual property
  • Drive new innovations while managing risk

Whether it's developing and understanding new platforms, integrating business processes, managing the value of new alliances, rights management, revenue assurance, transaction support, analytics, or other issues you are currently facing, we can help.

Business optimisation

Some of our clients have no prior experience of business change management. But shareholders are becoming increasingly demanding, so maximising the value that can be captured from initiatives is crucial. Such forces lead them to engaging us to assist with diverse briefs to help merge and align business operations.

Moreover, the frequency of cross-border transactions is also growing. Globalisation presents both new challenges and opportunities. But above all the marketplace has aligned itself to an increasingly connected and virtual business environment. As a consequence best practises have had to respond. This is particularly where opportunities involve two-way traffic, as with companies based in China, India and other emerging countries. In a connected world, it is as vital to understand national and regional differences as it is corporate differences in culture.

How Sopica can help you

We offer a business assurance and advisory services. This tends to involve working closely with our clients advisers and management. We’re also able to call on our extensive industry knowledge to ensure you approach negotiations with confidence to close the most competitive deal.

We can help you:

  • Find the best targets, and analyse their strengths and weaknesses
  • Identify synergies and potential opportunities for improvement
  • Negotiate the best terms
  • Draft agreements
  • Manage the post-deal integration process – when it is essential to retain business continuity by stabilising the newly acquisition
  • Identify moribund collateral - non-core assets and services to be sold off or decommissioned
  • Make major changes to realise improvements in long-term performance

Regulatory, some scenarios

Base lII

While the Basel II accord has now gone live in most parts of the world, many discrepancies still remain on advanced modeling techniques for operational risk among large international banks.  

The third of the Basel Accords was developed in a response to the deficiencies
in financial regulation revealed by the global financial crisis. It's essential approach involve the application of 2 major families of model:
  • The loss distribution approaches (LDAs) that focus on observed past internal and external loss events &
  • The scenario-based techniques that use subjective opinions from experts as the starting point to
determine the regulatory capital charge to cover operational risk. The new framework has been agreed although implementation details require ironing out. This will require major methodological challenge is the combination of both techniques so as to fulfill Basel II requirements. 
The updated guidelines are intended to strengthen bank capital requirements and 
introduces new regulatory requirements on bank liquidity and bank leverage. This follows from two rounds of public consultative process intended to improve:
1) Quality, consistency, and transparency of the capital base 
2) capital framework through Strengthened risk coverage
3) Basel II risk-based framework by introduction of a leverage ratio
4) Promoting build up of capital buffers in good times that can be drawn upon in periods of stress
5) Global liquidity standards & proactive provisioning
We can discuss and investigate the use of various alternatives
to model expert opinion in a sound statistical way so as to allow
for subsequent integration with loss distributions fitted on internal
and/or external data. In conjunction, we are able to provide numerical, business and system consultative advice to support the analysis. This will enable the implementation of most capital effective solutions.

Solvency II

Solvency II is a key regulatory initiative relevant to all insurance companies.

Sopica recognises the importance of this new regulation to its clients and has established a dedicated team of consultants to focus on providing technical, change and programme managers in this area.
Our network of associates and contacts in the industry make us ideally placed to respond to the recruitment demands which result from Solvency II related programmes.

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