Making it easy for ORX members to find, understand and act on crucial risk information with a Drupal 8-based web application.

ORX – the largest operational risk association in the financial services sector – provides news content that’s relied upon by organisations across the globe. As such, it’s vitally important that this content be accurate, accessible, and immediately understandable.

The web application we built using the open-source Drupal 8 content management platform addresses these crucial considerations, incorporating bespoke software development elements ranging from a tailored workflow process through to enhanced search functionality and a highly visual ‘news map’ to maximise value for ORX members.

With subscribers now able to easily get to the content they need (and quickly too), they can have increased confidence not only in their knowledge of emerging industry events, but of their subsequent level of exposure and risk – helping ensure they remain compliant in the face of complex regulations and legislation.

"The relationship has developed over time and there is an honest and open working relationship. Technical delivery is good and it has been a pleasure to work with the team. We look forward to future projects."

Jackie Applegate
Chief Operating Officer, ORX

The challenge

As an organisation owned and driven by its members, ORX understands that its continued success depends in large part on the level of service it delivers. Having already built up a successful reputation as an industry-leading provider of risk loss data, they wanted to add value by optimising how this data is presented – making it easier for members to locate, interpret and apply relevant insight within their own organisations.

A period of discovery

When ORX approached us with the requirement to overhaul their news application, we realised that a crucial first step would be getting to grips with the domain in which they operate, as financial risk analysis (also becoming known as “RegTech”) is a highly complex and specialised activity – not to mention an area where any inaccuracies or oversights can have substantial negative consequences. We therefore began the project with bespoke software consultancy activities including an in-depth discovery session, where our consultants and developers worked closely with members of the ORX team, including their dedicated product owner, to build up a shared understanding of requirements and agree upon an overarching product vision. This phase also helped confirm the scope of the project, and validated some of the initial ideas around a potential solution.

Ultimately too, the consultancy work we undertook – which included collaborative workshops, user profile analysis, and reviews of documentation, design assets and infrastructure – led to the creation of over 200 user stories and acceptance criteria. This enabled the team to enter into development with a clear picture of what we were building and who we were building it for, as well as providing clear, user-centred references to help keep things on track throughout the duration of the project.

Building on Drupal 8

To fit in with the client’s existing technology stack we chose Drupal as the foundation for the new application. By using the latest version of this enterprise content management system – Drupal 8 – our developers benefitted from all the power and capability the system has to offer, while bespoke development work was employed to deliver the specific features and functionality ORX requires.

This included a tailored internal workflow to manage the publication of the news snapshots, analysis documents and “deep dives” that the ORX editorial team creates on a daily basis. The significance and sensitivity of this information means that ensuring it’s correctly validated is vital; however with ORX committed to providing expert commentary in a timely manner speed is also of the essence. Our software consultants therefore worked to define a workflow that was as comprehensive as possible yet still highly efficient, as well as flexible enough to be adapted as needed without hindering the publication process.

Making things easy for ORX members

Of course, once content is published it needs to be findable in order to be truly valuable – especially as the ORX news application hosts over 6,000 documents on a range of different topics. To support content findability, our development team implemented bespoke advanced search functionality that enables members to search and filter by content type, currency referenced, loss amount range and more, in addition to the more standard keyword and reference ID searches. Additionally, the ability to save frequent searches means that those updates that are most relevant to a specific user can be given priority status.

While we were making it easier for ORX members to drill down into the content they’re most interested in though, we were also implementing functionality to provide a high-level picture of activity too. The ‘news map’ we built assigns each story a size and colour according to its focus and importance; updating in near real-time to provide an ‘at-a-glance’ overview of the wider industry landscape. As with the rest of the news content, this map can be searched and filtered according to a number of different attributes, providing direct access to specific news stories too for maximum convenience.

Finally, development was required to integrate the news application and the main ORX membership site, to enable members to move seamlessly between the two systems. This called for a Single Sign-On (SSO) solution that incorporated custom functionality, to cross-check the permissions each member has and direct them to the news application only if this subscription is part of their package.

Member and business benefits

Armed with their updated news application, ORX can secure the continued satisfaction – and subsequent loyalty – of its members, ensuring they remain a trusted source of industry data and analysis for years to come. Indeed, the organisation has reported a more than 40% increase in member traffic compared to the previous year (coming from 37 countries around the world), and a number of new trials have been taken up by additional interested financial institutions.

With the membership institution’s future plans including increasing their number of digital touchpoints with users, incorporating region- and topic-specific forums, and introducing self-service capabilities, this solution also provides a much-needed platform for growth – enabling ORX to take advantage of all the opportunities on offer in this fast-moving, technologically-driven space.

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