IBM AND CENTERPRISE INTRODUCE CORPORATE ACCOUNTABILITY SOLUTION ADDRESSING NEW FSA REGULATIONS

IBM and Centerprise Services Inc. announce that they are working together to deliver AccountabilityCenter, a fully comprehensive corporate accountability solution that is part of Centerprise's CenterSphere enterprise management system. The solution is launched in response to new FSA (the Financial Services Authority) regulations demanding that all managers have a documented understanding of the business for which they are responsible.

In response to recent pressure brought on by corporate scandals, regulators are demanding more disclosure of structures and processes to increase accountability and enhance transparency. Under the new FSA regulatory regime, each firm must maintain clear and appropriate apportionment of significant responsibilities among its directors and senior managers in such a way that it is clear who has which of those responsibilities. Moreover, each firm must maintain historical records, such as organisation charts and job descriptions, with the aim of ensuring that the responsibility and accountability of each individual line manager is clearly set out and understood.

AccountabilityCenter offers a systematic approach to formalising employee responsibilities and accountabilities, dynamically linking them with actual behaviour through workflow and business process management.

Specialists in IBM's Global Services financial services risk management practice are focused on providing consulting, customisation and integration services for AccountabilityCenter. Pierre Pourquery, head of IBM's Risk Management Practice in EMEA, says, "The accountability management offering from Centerprise is unique in its specialisation and effectiveness. It provides a resilient and flexible supervision tool enabling financial services organisations to respond effectively to the regulatory demands around corporate accountability."

Centerprise's CEO, Reto Tuffli, comments, "IBM is a key partner for Centerprise and provides the technology platforms and products vital for both e-business applications and enterprise-wide applications." He continues, "Our partnership with IBM provides access to its global network of infrastructure and integration support services, which is key to the successful launch of AccountabilityCenter."

The joint introduction of this corporate accountability solution is in line with IBM's continued focus on operational resilience. Simon Wilson, EMEA Alliances manager for IBM's Global Financial Markets, says, "CenterSphere is at the core of IBM's operational risk offering and provides a true enterprise management solution for financial services organisations."

Key features of the corporate accountability solution include:

· The ability to explicitly document and systematically maintain sets of important responsibilities, such as those between administrative and back-office support staff and front-office units, and to formally assign client and trading account responsibilities.
· Support for the maintenance of a firm's organisational structures, including "matrix management" structures or even more complex reporting lines.
· The ability to define group structures, such as the Board of Directors, committees and project teams.
· Historical state maintenance for all key data types, so that any moment in the past can be accurately recreated. This includes data on people, roles, responsibilities, organisational structures, etc.

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