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    The Elevated Hedge Fund Investor Experience

    Today, hedge fund investors are looking for seamless and interactive user experiences to help them access and analyze their investment performance. Hedge funds can upgrade the investor experience with cloud-based platforms and technology that make interacting with data easier.

    Technology can provide hedge fund investors with a more sophisticated user experience

    The rapidly growing popularity of retail banking and brokerage apps over the past decade has raised consumer expectations of instant access to their money. People rely on the ability to see their balances or conduct transactions at their fingertips 24/7. Consequently, the demand for a seamless and interactive user experience is now carrying over to institutional investing, even for complex investments such as hedge funds.

    With tech-centric habits in their personal lives, hedge fund investors want a streamlined digital portal where they can communicate directly with their fund managers, conduct transactions and interact directly with their data. This was not possible a few years ago, but technology has evolved to the point where hedge funds can consider making “white glove customer service” through a digital platform a reality.

    The traditional investor experience

    Traditionally, when working with hedge fund managers, investors gain insight into the activities and performance of the fund through monthly or quarterly statements and must call or email the fund to conduct transactions or communicate with managers.

    These periodic reports are often their only chance to get a glimpse into the performance of their investments, unlike consumers’ ability to access their banking or investment data 24/7. Since the statements only contain static data, they are still snapshots into the state of the fund at moments in time without the capability to visualize the data over a longer period and see a fuller picture.

    Investors also tend to receive this data in PDF form, without the ability to perform their own analysis through unique filtered views or exported datasets in Excel. In order to ask questions about the data, hedge fund clients typically must make the request through the manager who takes it to their fund administrator – a lengthy workflow that could be avoided with the help of technology.

    Upgraded technology, upgraded experience

    With the state-of-the-art technology on the market now, hedge funds can upgrade the investor experience. The arrival and acceptance of cloud-based platforms makes interacting with data possible, and with it, a whole host of other capabilities that increase access to and enable analysis of investment performance. Before the introduction of cloud-based data analysis technology, investors had static views of the data surrounding their assets but less of an ability to analyze the trends within it. Now, with capabilities such as data visualization, two-way communication via secure messages, electronic document signing and data export abilities to perform their own analysis in Excel, investors finally have the ability to mine data for deeper insights.

    Whether the client is an institutional investor or a wealthy individual, the value of gaining access to an upgraded experience and level of data transparency is about more than just their own understanding and peace of mind in their portfolios – it can also drive efficiencies for their internal processes, leading to a measurable impact on their investment. Ultimately, the elevated client experience can better position hedge funds to attract new capital.

    Partnering up for the new investor experience

    Hedge fund investors no longer have to settle for a static view of their investment data or an out-of-date customer experience. Data analysis has evolved to the point that investors can have more strategic views into their investment performance. When hedge funds find the right administrative partner to empower them with next generation technology and data capabilities, their clients can benefit from the new investor experience.

    Jeff Boyd portrait

    Jeff Boyd

    Senior Vice President Chief Executive Officer, North Americas, HFS
    Jeff is a Senior Vice President and Chief Executive Officer of Northern Trust Hedge Fund Services (NTHFS) North America. He is responsible for elevating Northern Trust’s profile in the hedge fund administration market driven by market-leading technology underlying an integrated back and middle office operating model and subject matter expertise in servicing hedge fund clients with complex strategies and products – with Northern Trust’s global scale, asset and custody servicing capabilities, and reputation.

    © 2023 Northern Trust Corporation. Head Office: 50 South La Salle Street, Chicago, Illinois 60603 U.S.A. Incorporated with limited liability as an Illinois corporation under number 0014019. Products and services provided by subsidiaries of Northern Trust Corporation may vary in different markets and are offered in accordance with local regulation. This material is directed to professional clients only and is not intended for retail clients. For Asia-Pacific markets, it is directed to expert, institutional, professional and wholesale clients or investors only and should not be relied upon by retail clients or investors. For legal and regulatory information about our offices and legal entities, visit northerntrust.com/disclosures. The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed in the text belong solely to the author, and not necessarily to the author's employer, organization, committee or other group or individual. The following information is provided to comply with local disclosure requirements: The Northern Trust Company, London Branch, Northern Trust Global Investments Limited, Northern Trust Securities LLP and Northern Trust Investor Services Limited, 50 Bank Street, London E14 5NT. Northern Trust Global Services SE, 10 rue du Château d’Eau, L-3364 Leudelange, Grand-Duché de Luxembourg, incorporated with limited liability in Luxembourg at the RCS under number B232281; authorised by the ECB and subject to the prudential supervision of the ECB and the CSSF; Northern Trust Global Services SE UK Branch, UK establishment number BR023423 and UK office at 50 Bank Street, London E14 5NT; Northern Trust Global Services SE Sweden Bankfilial, Ingmar Bergmans gata 4, 1st Floor, 114 34 Stockholm, Sweden, registered with the Swedish Companies Registration Office (Sw. Bolagsverket) with registration number 516405-3786 and the Swedish Financial Supervisory Authority (Sw. Finansinspektionen) with institution number 11654; Northern Trust Global Services SE Netherlands Branch, Viñoly 7th floor, Claude Debussylaan 18 A, 1082 MD Amsterdam; Northern Trust Global Services SE Abu Dhabi Branch, registration Number 000000519 licenced by ADGM under FSRA #160018; Northern Trust Global Services SE Norway Branch, org. no. 925 952 567 (Foretaksregisteret), address Third Floor, Haakon VIIs gate 6 0161 Oslo, is a Norwegian branch of Northern Trust Global Services SE supervised by Finanstilsynet. Northern Trust Global Services SE Leudelange, Luxembourg, Zweigniederlassung Basel is a branch of Northern Trust Global Services SE. The Branch has its registered office at Grosspeter Tower, Grosspeteranlage 29, 4052 Basel, Switzerland, and is authorised and regulated by the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority FINMA. The Northern Trust Company Saudi Arabia, PO Box 7508, Level 20, Kingdom Tower, Al Urubah Road, Olaya District, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia 11214-9597, a Saudi Joint Stock Company – capital 52 million SAR. Regulated and Authorised by the Capital Market Authority License #12163-26 CR 1010366439. Northern Trust (Guernsey) Limited (2651)/Northern Trust Fiduciary Services (Guernsey) Limited (29806)/Northern Trust International Fund Administration Services (Guernsey) Limited (15532) are licensed by the Guernsey Financial Services Commission. Registered Office: Trafalgar Court, Les Banques, St Peter Port, Guernsey GY1 3DA. Northern Trust International Fund Administration Services (Ireland) Limited (160579)/Northern Trust Fiduciary Services (Ireland) Limited (161386),  Registered Office: Georges Court, 54-62 Townsend Street, Dublin 2, D02 R156, Ireland.