Irish bank credits Demarq’s Environment Management Services for delivering SAS platform ROI

By significantly improving how a mid-sized bank managed its SAS analytical environment, Demarq transitioned an under-performing platform into a highly effective business asset. The result of this collaboration lead to:

  • A stable environment
  • Increased up-time
  • Increased performance and scalability of the SAS platform
  • A more effective and productive IT Function
  • More interaction with the platform from the business users
  • Increased confidence in the platform capabilities
  • A recognised return on investment

How did these benefits translate into business value for the bank?

  • The bank’s IT Function was transformed from merely fire-fighting to actively supporting analytical projects that continue to drive positive business outcomes.
  • The bank saved money by enabling the Risk team to deploy IFRS9 alongside their IRB modelling despite concern that this would represent an unrealistic workload on the SAS Grid. Increased productivity and capability meant the environment didn’t have to be scaled.
  • The bank’s Customer Analytics team are now widely regarded as industry thought leaders in the Republic of Ireland. The Head of Marketing Analytics is active in forums presenting business success to the industry; a success built on a stable environment.

The background story:

The bank had made a considerable investment in their analytical platform (hardware and software) to address differing business requirements: The Risk team had regulatory requirements around IRB (Basel 2) and IFRS9. The Customer Analytics team needed to leverage their ever-increasing load of customer-centric data to optimise marketing campaigns and customer relationship management. It was hoped that procurement of SAS Grid architecture would give them the ability to run disparate workloads in parallel on a single infrastructure sharing a single SAS Software license.

However, this considerable resource was only delivering limited value to the business as the bank’s IT Function struggled to manage the environment effectively.

How were the IT Function issues impacting the bank?

  • The analytical environment was often unavailable due to storage and I/O bottleneck issues. Re-starts were lengthy.
  • There was often environment overload due to multiple businesses migrating work onto the system.
  • The support function available to users was purely reactive.
  • Internal process was hindering required maintenance.
  • The analytics environment was draining IT resource and defocusing them from other responsibilities.

Consequently, as the IT Function failed to deliver a stable, resilient environment, the bank was unable to perform the required analytics; and this was amounting to a loss in confidence in the platform and its perceived ROI value.

How did Demarq help?

Demarq was brought in to engage with the bank in an Environment Management Services capacity. The aim: to help the IT Function provide a more effective service to platform users reliant on the environment to deliver commercially valuable insight to the bank. Here’s what we did to reverse the bank’s mounting concerns over its environment shortfalls:

Steps to success:

  • We conducted an environment review to evaluate the extent of the bank’s problems.
  • We prioritised the order in which critical issues of the analytical environment needed to be addressed (using our Pathway to Environment Management framework).
  • We planned the programme of work for stabilising the environment.
  • We implemented a governance structure (amongst decision makers and user community) to enable fast track resolution of critical issues.
  • We improved communication and team moral via creation of a user forum.

In short, we helped put in place measurable steps to success.

Why choose us? Demarq’s strengths'

  • Our collective industry experience and expertise.
  • The unique Pathways stepping stone methodology we designed to ensure our customers realise value early on, and incrementally.
  • Our commitment to finding a solution that meets our customers’ budget and time constraints.
  • Our ability to work collaboratively with our customers to ensure our approach is right for your requirements. (We certainly won’t try to sell you something you don’t need.)
  • The passion we have for helping our customers achieve their business goals.

Whatever the size of your organisation, if you’d like to talk to us about how our Pathway to Environment Management could help your business, we’d be happy to discuss this with you; or indeed any additional questions you may have. Call 0161 956 2638, or email:

Michael Collington

Director of Demarq

Here’s what our customers had to say about Demarq…

A team with the ability to position the conversation at a high Business Management level or a low detailed technical level as required.

Brought us from a reactive support position back to a proactive standard.

Allowed us to deliver on an IFRS9 objective – “Prevent IT being a blocker for the IFRS9 programme

A team that operates in a self-governed manner.

Understand the need for flexibility in delivery.

Operate as a team with mixed skill-set of individuals.


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