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An investment manager with more than USD 1 trillion in AUM, offering equity, fixed income, and balanced investment portfolios to corporations, governments, and retirement plans, launched an initiative to replace their front and middle office technology platforms. The project included evaluating the replacement of their proprietary performance measurement system with a vendor package that could calculate and report on performance results of portfolio managers, institutional accounts, and ‘40 Act mutual funds. An ideal solution would include performance attribution.

Client Profile

Client Type:  Investment Manager

Assets Under Management: Over USD 1 trillion

Location:  Multiple Worldwide

Cutter Practice:

 Systems Search & Selection


The firm asked Cutter Associates for help evaluating and selecting a vendor solution for performance measurement, and ideally, for performance attribution as well. They asked us to help them gather requirements, benchmark against peers, prepare and evaluate RFPs, facilitate vendor product demonstrations, and make a final recommendation. But after extensive meetings with stakeholders from each business area, we helped them realize that what they wanted was a performance measurement and attribution solution that could calculate and report performance results for these three types of results:

  • Portfolio Managers (according to the client’s specific methodology)
  • Institutional (Separate) Accounts
  • ‘40 Act Mutual Funds

We combined our experience and our existing RFP library, as well as collateral we produced in previous vendor selection engagements, and we re-examined CutterResearch reports on performance measurement and attribution. We then created an RFP customized to account for all of our client’s fully documented, detailed requirements. When the corresponding proposals started coming back, we evaluated them and provided active inputs and recommendations.

Further into the process, we developed a shortened list of vendors to invite in for demonstrations, created detailed agendas for the demonstrations, and provided detailed evaluations after the vendor demonstrations. Based on the RFP responses and product demonstrations, we identified the top two vendors and recommended the best solution based on currently available capabilities.

In three weeks, we helped our client develop a highly detailed and tailored RFP, an unprecedented time frame for completing this process with an organization of this size. In less than 12 weeks, we provided detailed evaluations of each vendor’s technological capabilities, as well as a solid foundation for taking the next steps. By leveraging proven evaluation criteria, demonstration scripts, and reports from CutterResearch and CutterBenchmarking as starting points, we reduced our client’s costs of evaluating and selecting a solution, and increased their confidence that they were making the right choices.