An interview with Bob Sullivan, President and CEO, Pinpoint Global
Pinpoint Global specializes in providing compliance solutions for the financial services industry. According to Bob Sullivan, “Compliance is a primary reason we are focused on financial services. These firms have thousands or, in some instances, tens of thousands of agents and advisors all over the country. The industry is highly regulated. The corporate and personal liabilities are high if a firm does not maintain correct compliance policies and accurate compliance records.”
Pinpoint Global’s clients are typically Fortune 500 or Fortune 1000. This includes large insurance companies, broker-dealers, large distribution companies, and banks-firms that could provide a retail sale of a financial service to a consumer. These firms have established infrastructure technology within which Pinpoint Global must integrate its compliance solution. Added Sullivan, “Our clients’ infrastructure is highly secure. Pinpoint Global must securely integrate its compliance systems into their infrastructure through client-provided data feeds and SAML sign-on authentication. Once deployed, the Pinpoint Global system solves very time-dependent firm and regulatory requirements. For example, Pinpoint Global routinely supports certification of advisors to sell specific products - like annuities - or for advisors providing financial advice to their clients.”
RIA Firm Solutions
The fastest growing segment in financial services is the RIA space. These smaller independent firms are entrepreneurial. Often overlooked at these firms is the personal liability that Chief Compliance Officers (CCOs) may be exposed to. Pinpoint Global’s ComplianceConnect is unique in its ability to serve organizations regardless of scale. ComplianceConnect includes over 20 individual compliance modules. All modules are subscription-based and solve for RIAs’ and CCOs’ risks. Historically Pinpoint Global focused on implementing and maintaining systems for the largest enterprise custom multiyear projects. Pinpoint Global is now re-packaging their enterprise class solution into an easy-to-implement subscription service to meet the requirements of small to midsize RIA firms.
Sullivan detailed that clients working with Pinpoint Global are assigned a project manager, a lead engineer, and a technical support person. Pinpoint Global’s structured project management process starts with the client providing Pinpoint Global the requirements for their project, either through a client interview or a written business requirements document. The project is translated into a technical specification. The technical specification is detailed down to user interface, data transfer, data formatting, hierarchy needs, and more. The engineers build it out, and it goes through an internal and external test process with the client called user acceptance testing (UAT). After the client signs off the UAT, the project is deployed using a detailed and efficient process. Sullivan further explained, “One of Pinpoint Global’s key differentiators is that this process gives us operational excellence and an operational reliance where Pinpoint Global can commit very confidently at a 99.99% level that we’ll deliver a project ‘on schedule, to spec,’ when we go into production.”
Data storage requirements are another compliance struggle for CCOs. Legacy systems are people-dependent, often manual, and may be cobbled together using spreadsheets or CRMs. They lack reliability and integrity.
Our systems are highly reliable. They just don’t break, ever. We have had zero downtime in the last five years, continuously working with hundreds of clients and hundreds-of-thousands of logins and transactions every month
All Pinpoint Global systems support SEC 17(a)-4 compliant records storage. Pinpoint Global is the Gold Storage Record keeper for all its compliance clients. Added Sullivan, “There are certain things you must have. You must have web-based technology for the delivery and distribution of the content. Financial service firms must store compliance records to meet SEC requirements. Specifically, compliance records must be stored in multiple places on write once, read many times media, ensuring all records are indelible and can’t be written over.”
To conclude, Sullivan reiterated, “We built out infrastructure and software services to translate client requirements into simple-to-use systems. Our clients’ advisors can easily and efficiently complete their compliance requirements in a system that tracks and provides access to all advisor compliance submissions through an integrated reporting console. All online and affordable.”