Our CEO, Mark Veevers, shares his views on technology as a service, his mission and approach to problem solving.
What do you think we, in business, can learn from the players in consumer technology today?
We are used to consuming technology as a service in our personal lives in a fluid and intuitive way; whether that’s accessing music through Spotify, health tracking from a smart watch or watching content through Netflix. These brands service our needs daily and we can learn a huge amount from them.
In Financial Services the digital banks are particularly interesting; Xinja is a great example. When you look at their philosophy and offering it provides an entirely new way to interact with a bank. In the Fund Management sector, ONE group solutions are using NextGen technology to innovate and deliver services for their clients. These companies are challenging themselves to reimagine how things can be done and in doing so they, and their peers, are challenging the incumbent institutions. They are forcing established players to invest in their own technology, with end users benefitting from service improvements across the board.
Organisations continue to invest millions in technology while simultaneously trying to squeeze the last bit out of their technology spend. In the reckoning, it comes down to achieving best value – which of course can be measured in lots of ways. For me, it is always in answering the key question: ‘are we helping our customers serve their customers better?’.
How does MAIA help its customers serve their customers better?
MAIA was built from scratch, ground up, with the needs of the end user at the heart of every decision we made along the way. We don’t have the restrictions of technical debt that many legacy systems struggle with, where they are building on top of an outdated technology stack which was never user-first. We invite our customers to ask for changes that help them and we are able to implement these quickly and efficiently through our technology. This approach extends across all elements of our client relationships where we take a long-term partnership approach. For example, prospects have asked us to think outside of the box on how our pricing model can enable them to better scale and we remain committed to finding creative solutions.
What’s your personal mission for MAIA?
I am passionate about establishing a corporate culture which puts clients at the heart of our process. For me, this is our central tenet and if we can achieve that, truly understand our clients and the market they operate in, we can make better decisions and find better solutions for them more often.
The technology space is exciting, partly because new capabilities emerge all the time, but this can also be an agitating factor. Companies risk losing sight of clients’ needs in chasing new technology. Consider Blockchain: a ground breaking technology, but one which outpaced the need for it in the market. Nevertheless we saw Blockchain solutions being established, at huge expense, where they didn’t service a real requirement.
A personal guiding principle, that I feel plays into our client centricity very closely, is to always act with integrity. This is the foundation for my, and indeed MAIA’s, decision making. I see this as key in developing trust and mutually beneficial relationships both internally and with our clients, which should in turn inform associated commercial success for both parties. Ultimately, I’d like to get affirmation that we have been able to help our clients better serve theirs.
A key point of difference for MAIA is around finding solutions, why is that?
Most decisions we make in life begin with a problem we want to solve. One of these problems is finding the right technology platform to serve your business. We have made it our business to solve this problem by developing a solution that truly serves the investment management community. We understand the issues, having built our architecture around clients’ needs from the ground up, and on top of that we work hard to learn and adapt during a client engagement.
What’s your biggest problem right now and how do you plan to solve it?
Our prospects,understandably, will have a perception of risk in partnering with a new and independent company. Our solution? We will evangelise about our technology, the commitment and motivation of our people and their creativity in finding solutions. And we will do this with integrity.
How do you personally solve problems?
I believe we can only solve problems when we understand the framework in which they exist. I try to understand the jigsaw of everything that sits around the problem to identify the cause. It is also important to look at issues objectively. If something doesn’t work you do everything you can to fix it, even if it means unpicking a tricky corner of the jigsaw.
MAIA Technology provides SaaS solutions designed to meet the unique needs of the Financial Services community focusing specifically on the Investment and Operational workflows of Asset Managers and Hedge Funds. MAIA’s proposition is a unique solution to the “Build versus Buy” question combining pre-configured workflows with custom and client-maintained engines.