Organisational Dynamics Within Markets Business Management

The COO community unexpectedly found themselves central stage in March 2020, when promoted to a heightened position of visibility and responsibility. 

This responsibility was to manage the complexity and myriad of challenges presented by the pandemic. Whether this enhancement of position and influence are temporary or will reshape the mandate of the COO and business management is yet to be determined.

What is materialising is a review of the role and mandate of the COO, aimed at determining how best can this central role and function serve the business. 

In any group that has multiple businesses and operates in many locations, the division and allocation of business management responsibilities have historically been reviewed regularly, non-less so than in APAC. Here the multi-jurisdictional, cultural, and complex regulatory landscape across the region lends itself to a unique portfolio of challenges for the COO community, and the CEO who needs to use this function to best serve the interests of the business. 

More recently a question is being asked by some is how best to meet this challenge, but in context to meeting the uniqueness of the challenges presented by the complexity of operating within financial markets. At the centre of this debate is the splitting of responsibilities between the country or entity COO and the regional COO Markets, who is charged to manage disparate Markets’ activities? 

This survey aims to establish what the market norm is in relation to this point of debate. Undertaken by 22 Global banks, all members of the International COO Community (iCOOC), and representing the international community with operations in APAC (Canada, the US, UK, mainland Europe, Japan and Singapore) the results present a clear picture: 

The business management operating model and how Markets activities are supported by the COO function is overwhelmingly dictated by the size of the bank in region and specifically its Markets’ franchise. 

All banks with a mid to significant Market’s business, except one, operate with a regional Markets COO, with locational COOs and/or business managers all reporting into this regional COO. 

Markets related activities are managed by a Markets specialist in location, reporting to the regional COO, but working hand in hand with local and regional compliance partners and where the impact of a regulation may be strategic, with the country COO, but not led or owned by the country COO. 

Note 1: where the locational Markets activities and operations are notional, there may be exceptions and the entity COO may manage Markets taskings, but this is the exception. 

Note 2: with comparatively smaller regional Markets’ businesses, where activities are minimal in all but the regional hub, no Markets head count is warranted and aligned activities 

Managing Your Career Into 2024 and Beyond 

As 2023 draws to an end, the current geopolitical climate, marked by uncertainties such as the Israel/Gaza and Russia/Ukraine conflicts, is having a significant impact on career landscapes, particularly in the Financial Services sector, which is highly sensitive to...

Artificial Intelligence – Where Are We Now?

Forum Summary Dec 2023 The evolution of artificial intelligence (AI) has been a journey of transformative technological advancements. Once it was big data that dominated the tech scene; now, AI is at the forefront. AI encompasses a wide spectrum of technologies, which...

Consumer Duty – A Hot Topic

Terry Yodaiken, Armstrong Wolfe Advisor The July 2023 deadline for firms to have completed effective implementation for the FCA’s Consumer Duty initiative is fast approaching and exactly where asset managers are in their implementation journey’s is a hot topic.  To...

Converging Paths: The Synchronicity of Product Visionaries

In the realm of innovation, where revolutions unfold, it is crucial to comprehend the profound significance of design.Design is not about mere appearances; it is the fusion of aesthetics, functionality, and human experience. Our duty as pioneers of the digital age is...

Management challenges within hybrid working

Hybrid working has become the pyramidal battleground between the authority of the company to define its working patterns and the right of the individual to select their own. This point of tension rests upon an understandable, although some would say aged corporate...

3 of 24 things on the Control Officer’s mind

1. What’s in a name? 2. Can you measure culture? 3. Emerging technologies 1. What’s in a name? Within the continued evolution of controls and 1st line risk management, some banks are renaming their control function, risk management. Most say it would make sense to...

Workforce Management: Caught in the hybrid cul-de-sac

The honeymoon period for hybrid working is over, the hopes of a new epoch in working practices has hairline cracks, and companies that embraced this new dawn are facing difficult decisions. It is too simplistic to draw a line mid-Atlantic to define where banking and...

Mental Health Forum Summary – UK Mental Health Week 2023

The use of data to manage stress and mental health in the workplace is crucial for maximising productivity. In 2022, Armstrong Wolfe launched an ESG data management programme with our alliance partner Sutherland. From this programme, we concluded three things: Many...

The role of the COO in developing and implementing ESG strategies

Armstrong Wolfe are looking to establish the current roles and responsibilities of the COO where they relate to managing and interacting with their organisation’s ESG strategy, and to offer a possible framework of solutions to facilitate productive ESG management. In...