IMI-NQR-INSIGHT-01 Intermediary INSIGHTFor fund families planning to build, organize, or expand their financial intermediary oversight program, Intermediary INSIGHT is the ultimate analytical and reporting service.

 

“One of the most valuable services NQR offers is insight into the trends and developing best practices in the asset management industry.”

– Compliance Manager, Intermediary INSIGHT Client


 

 

Recent regulatory changes in asset management have created a need for expanded omnibus and intermediary oversight programs.  With over 25 years of industry experience, we know that deeper due diligence means extraordinary challenges for fund families, especially when resources are limited.  NQR’s robust intermediary oversight solution can help your firm increase efficiency and reduce operating expenses of your oversight program.

 

Intermediary INSIGHT (IM INSIGHT) will strengthen your oversight initiatives through NQR’s compliance analysis, operational expertise, data management, and ongoing consultative support.  Simply log in and view the results of our analysis through a comprehensive suite of online tools.

 

 


 

1-Page Overview         Onboarding Process

 


 

Key Features

 

 

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Intermediary Analysis

  • Expert analysis of FICCA and SOC reports, questionnaires, certificates, and any other audit documentation
  • Sufficiency ratings of FICCA control objectives for each intermediary
  • Detailed FINRA news, rule filings, and disciplinary history
  • Library of customizable dashboards and Board reports
  • Document repository
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Standardization & Benchmarking

  • Audit results mapped to the ICI’s FICCA framework
  • Consistent numerical approach for easy comparisons between intermediaries
  • Display of which FICCA audit controls have highest priority for NQR clients
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Best Practices Consulting

  • Unlimited access to your dedicated relationship manager
  • Expertise and insights based on NQR clients navigating the same oversight challenges
  • Access to NQR’s user community of industry best practices, thought leadership, and program improvement
  • Quarterly client user groups to discuss and compare program initiatives

 

Benefits

 

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Compliance

  • Leverage NQR’s expertise to identify FICCA control gaps for optimum risk mitigation
  • Pinpoint operational and regulatory blind spots that are priorities to your organization
  • Enhance due diligence by expanding the number of intermediaries in your oversight program
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Efficiency

  • Streamline data access to exceed Board reporting expectations
  • Reduce manual workload and operating costs
  • Reallocate valuable resources to focus on action planning
  • Seamlessly integrate all intermediary documentation
  • View audit document solicitation plan, status, and follow-up dates
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Transparency

  • Oversee your intermediary or omnibus oversight program from a consolidated online tool with unlimited organizational access
  • Get a holistic perspective on your intermediaries
  • Gain competitive intelligence on industry priorities

 

NEW  |  Fee Assessment

 

IMI-NQR-INSIGHT-01 Intermediary INSIGHTIn response to the SEC’s 2016 sub-accounting fee guidance and recent substantial fines for “distribution in guise,” NQR designed an Intermediary Fee Assessment Platform.

Fee Assessment is fully integrated with IM INSIGHT and helps fund companies assess the reasonableness of fees paid to their intermediary partners for non-distribution services.

Request a demo or more information to learn about Fee Assessment benchmarks and Board reporting.

 

 


 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

Who subscribes to NQR’s INSIGHT services?

NQR provides service quality and compliance solutions to mutual fund companies and third-party transfer agents of all sizes.  We’ve customized our services to meet the unique operating and reporting requirements of each client’s internal or outsourced transfer agent, intermediary, and vendor oversight programs.  For an NQR client list, please request additional information.

 

What is the pricing structure for IM INSIGHT?

We offer flexible pricing structures depending on your firm’s budget deadline and selection of IM INSIGHT modules.  For more on pricing, please request additional information.

 

How long is the onboarding process once I subscribe?

We provide a fast and seamless 6-week integration process between the signing and go-live dates.

 

Does IM INSIGHT provide intermediary fee management or invoice reconciliation?

IM INSIGHT focuses on the oversight aspect of intermediary partnerships.  However, the Fee Assessment module allows funds to assess the reasonableness of fees paid to their intermediary partners for non-distribution services.

 

How many intermediaries from my program can the IM INSIGHT service review?

The standard IM INSIGHT package includes document analysis for up to 40 intermediaries.  More can be added for an additional fee.

 

How many of my intermediaries are already reviewed by NQR?

If you request additional information on IM INSIGHT we would be more than happy to provide the answer.  Our database likely covers a majority—if not all—of your intermediary partners already.

 

My oversight program contains few intermediaries.  Should I still subscribe to IM INSIGHT?

IM INSIGHT works for firms and programs of any size.  Our clients review anywhere from 15-75 intermediaries in their oversight program.  And, as a result of our service, many have expanded their due diligence efforts and the number of intermediaries under review in their program.

 

How do clients transfer intermediary audit documents to NQR?

Our clients upload audit documentation they’ve received from their distribution partners through NQR’s secure INSIGHT platform.  IM INSIGHT’s Document Solicitation module helps manage the process of collecting and uploading documents.  Additionally, NQR is partnering with a growing number of intermediaries that allow the sharing of audit documents directly with NQR and our clients.  These arrangements significantly streamline the document retrieval process.

 

Once an audit document is uploaded to IM INSIGHT, what’s the turnaround time for NQR’s analysis?

On average, our IM INSIGHT team reviews the document and uploads analysis results within two weeks.  Your NQR relationship manager will inform you when the findings are ready for online viewing.

 

My intermediaries provide significantly different audit reports.  How can the results be standardized and compared?

NQR has adopted the ICI’s FICCA framework as the basis for evaluating all audit reports regardless of type.  We review all intermediary documentation and map findings to the framework, enabling our clients to compare the results of one intermediary to others in the same or different channels.  Our review includes FICCA and SOC reports, questionnaires, certificates, and any other supplemental documentation.

 

Do SOC 1 reports provide enough information to draw meaningful conclusions about my intermediaries’ control environments?

While the SOC 1 typically doesn’t cover as many relevant controls as the FICCA, the reports do provide substantial insight.  NQR’s annual review of over 100 intermediaries’ audit documents reveals that, on average, broker/dealer SOC 1 reports address 73% of the FICCA framework.  SOC 1 reports from non-broker/dealers address 42% of the framework.

 

We prefer that our internal team maintain heavy involvement in intermediary oversight.  Will IM INSIGHT limit our connection to the process?

IM INSIGHT does not limit internal involvement in intermediary oversight.  Instead, the service frees up internal resources and allows your team’s focus to shift from document review to action planning and building relationships with your distribution partners.

 

Who from NQR reviews the audit documents?

Our IM INSIGHT team averages over 19 years of industry experience and 12 years of NQR tenure.  Team degrees, certifications, and industry licenses include J.D., Certified Quality Improvement Associate (ASQ), Series 6, Series 7, Series 26, and Series 63.  Over the past three years the team has assessed audit documents from over 100 of the largest mutual fund intermediaries.  This includes subaccounting, trust, insurance, and recordkeeping firms.

 


 

Client Testimonials

 

 

“One of the most valuable services NQR offers is insight into the trends and developing best practices in the asset management industry.”

– Compliance Manager

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“NQR adds value by offering 3rd-party perspective. This resonates with executive management and the Fund Board.”

– Senior Vice President

 

“I always find it challenging to read through audit documents since it’s so time-consuming and difficult to stay focused.  Having NQR review and analyze our audit documents is extremely valuable.”

– Senior TA Operations Analyst

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“I could not have asked for anything more.  NQR’s team has been extremely accommodating and I appreciate that they’re always forward thinking!”

– Senior Operations Manager

 

“The service is based on quality, collaboration, and thought leadership.”

– Senior Vice President

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“Intermediary INSIGHT is valuable because it’s necessary due diligence to better understand our business partners.”

– Quality Analyst