GRC 20/20 Research awarded ClusterSeven ESM its 2013 GRC Value award in Information and Data Governance. With the help of the ClusterSeven Enterprise Spreadsheet Manager (ESM) solution, the global European banking and financial services company was able to meet regulatory demands to demonstrate control over its core financial operations. In the process, the bank projects a 3.5x ROI on ClusterSeven ESM based on risk avoidance.

As part of improving controls over its core financial processes, the bank was required to demonstrate control over business-critical spreadsheets in trading, risk management, product control and finance. ClusterSeven ESM was implemented to provide the required control and transparency. Short-term benefits of the implementation were a 1.5x ROI on ClusterSeven within one year, and a 3.5x expected return projection based on risk avoidance figures. Other benefits included:

  • Implementation of a tool that could facilitate spreadsheet best practices — primarily spreadsheet consolidation
  • A more organized and streamlined process
  • An improved, more rigorous change control over VBA Macro codes within spreadsheets
  • Addition of electronic sign-off provides improved workflow and enhanced visibility

Before the ClusterSeven ESM solution, the bank performed this process by manual controls only.

Real data on ClusterSeven’s value

The bank’s backup team calculates that they receive about 12 requests for retrieval of historical spreadsheet versions per day. Snapshots of file servers are taken every three hours during the day. On average, about 1.5 hours of work is lost on work done in between backups. This, in addition to the wait for the restoration of the spreadsheet and support time to retrieve the old version, about 21 hours of employee time per day was lost to retrieval of historical spreadsheet versions. With ClusterSeven, no support time is required, the time used to process the retrieval is negligible, and the average gap between snapshots is about 30 minutes — adding up to 1.5 hours lost per day. This is a time savings of 19.5 hours of company time, per day because of the ClusterSeven ESM solution.

In a similar scenario, the bank calculates ClusterSeven ESM’s SOX compliance process uses 750 hours of company time per year, compared to 3,125 hours per year with the old process — the equivalent of four FTE positions.

The bank also calculates many softer benefits of the ClusterSeven ESM solution, detailed in the table below.  


To learn more about the GRC 20/20 2013 GRC Value Awards and other recipients, please visit this post: GRC 20/20 Announces 2013 GRC Value Award Recipients

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