We converged over two days and across time zones to develop unique data visualization tools to help investors better understand ESG risk.
In March 2018, teams of our employees gathered in huddle spaces, took over video conferencing rooms, and navigated time zones for one purpose – to develop working prototypes of unique data visualization tools and dashboards to help investors better understand environmental, social and governance (ESG) risk in their portfolios.
Frances Barney, CFA, head of Global Risk Solutions for Asset Servicing at BNY Mellon, explained, “In markets around the world, capital is increasingly reallocated toward more sustainable investments, but there is much that the financial services industry has to learn about how ESG factors affect underlying investment portfolios both in terms of risk profile and performance enhancement.” To help us respond to the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), government legislative proposals, and asset owners’ increasing desire to invest in a responsible and sustainable manner, BNY Mellon hosted a Social Investing Innovation Challenge for employees.
During the two-day challenge, 14 teams of BNY Mellon technology developers, client-facing product specialists and ESG experts worked to create concepts and prototypes to help clients understand the ESG impact of their holdings on an actual and relative basis. A diverse panel of expert judges selected the winners, who presented the most innovative way of displaying data our clients want to see.
After the event, we sent the winning concepts to our client advisory boards to validate the direction, invited clients to co-design with us, and, in 2019, launched a new ESG Analytics capability.1 “Our employees amazed us,” said Barney, who was one of the judges. “We put a client challenge in front of them and they stepped outside their daily roles to design, test and launch a solution. The Challenge exemplified our teams’ ingenuity and eagerness to address some of the industry’s toughest questions and respond to client needs.”