Every time you think you've got a handle on how to manage and benchmark the performance of the funds you invest, markets blow up and you have to start all over again.

Every time you think you've figured out what the best ways are to segregate customers into "high-touch" accounts that you can afford to give personal attention to, regularly, from "low-touch" accounts where you have to automate insight and service, the game changes.

More and more customers need to get investment advice and support - but that advice and support may have to come from a machine, rather than a man or woman.

Which means that the adroit money management executive is going to need to understand, more and more, how the back offices of their firms operate and how technology will help you provide support and service to customers of all types and all levels of wealth. And to manage the collection of funds that you need to invest on their behalfs.

This is why Money Management Executive, at this point, is stepping up its coverage of how money management firms operate and what information systems exist to better track not just one's own bottom-line performance, but how well you perform for your customers' bottom lines.

Chris Kentouris, who has covered the middle and back offices of securities firms for close to two decades for a sister publication and site at SourceMedia, now is bringing her expertise to Money Management Executive. She will keep you abreast of how, for instance, you will need to set up shop in Europe, if you want to most effectively market your funds across its many borders. Or, here in North America, how you will need to adjust your accounting to get ready for new cost-basis rules mandated by regulators.

Then there's technology. Used to be, individuals with lots of money got their wealth placed in "separately managed" accounts. Why? Because they were special. They were owed separate management because of the amount of funds involved. Their wealth.

Now, though, a brand-name outfit like MetLife is using automation to provide support and service akin to that delivered to wealthy customers in "separately managed" accounts to individuals with opening balances as low as $10,000.

Which is why we're also stepping up our technology coverage. That will be my beat.

Lee Barney will still bring you the kind of insight and forward-thinking about how mutual funds, hedge funds, funds-of-funds and other means of managing assets should function and deal with constantly changing economic, regulatory and marketing conditions. She's done so unfailingly and unflinchingly since MME debuted seven years ago.

And now you can also hear the nitty-gritty about how funds operate and the tools they can use to win customers in smart, efficient ways.

Let us know what you want to know more about.

Lee can be reached at Elizabeth.barney@sourcemedia.com.

Chris is at chressa.kentouris@sourcemedia.com.

And I am at tom.steinert@sourcemedia.com. MME


Tom Steinert-Threlkeld is Editorial Director & Technology Editor of Money Management Executive.

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