We continue our interview series with the brilliant people of Nordea Markets. Christel is the Head of Customer Operations in Markets Finland. Read about Christel’s career, her tips for job searching and more below.
What is your background and for how long have you worked in Customer Operations?
I began my banking career as a settlement officer in FXMM back-office in 1988 in former Kansallis-Osake-Pankki (KOP). After four years I took the responsibility for investigations and compensation handling for Markets FX interbank deals. I truly enjoyed my work; you had the largest international banks to confront and no case was alike. In 2007 I wanted to try out managerial position and took the chance as a team leader in Clearing Nostro position. It was extremely interesting time as we were implementing a new Nordic position system, GPS. In 2010 I returned to former Centralized FXMM Operations as a Section Head for Settlements. In 2012 Clearing, FXMM and Derivative operations (CFD) in CMS went through an organizational change where Customer Operations setup was aligned finally for all Nordic countries. Today I am heading a team of 13 highly qualified employees in CO Finland.
Each above position are complementing each other and give a profound knowledge and understanding of the back-office value chain from processing, settlement, covering banks nostro position to any investigations.
What is your team’s role in Nordea Markets?
CO Finland services Markets Sales by handling the settlement process for FX, MM and derivative products. We are the back office contact point for all private and corporate customers on all prod-ucts in these categories. We also maintain the static data for settlements and confirmation prefer-ences.
Our mission is to be recognized as the best provider of Back Office Operations and services in the Nordic region adding value to our customers and partners. We are pro-actively in contact and in dialogue with our customers delivering on their demands and future needs.
In early 2013 CFD Management group took the decision to centralize all Nordic treasury back-office processes to CO FI meaning that we are also responsible for processing and settling Group Funding’s treasury FXMM transactions as well as the static data processes involved.
Can you describe a typical day at the office?
A typical day at the office consists of processing both Markets customer deals as well as Treasury’s transactions. We communicate a lot with our local customers as well as dealers. We make sure set-tlement instructions are exchanged and correct, payments are sent, confirmations are delivered in time and matched, our static data is up to date in order to ensure smooth and STP processes. We gather to our PMB (Performance Management Board) every day for 15 min to solve issues around our processes, to brain storm on good ideas how to excel our services towards our customers and partners. We have 7 persons taking care of the daily tasks and 4 specialists who are more involved with investigations, developing our processes, participating projects and testing. Together they make an excellent team.
Our motto is hire for attitude, train for skills.
What kind of qualifications are you looking for when you are hiring?
Our motto is hire for attitude, train for skills! As Nordeas’ most important value is Great Customer Experience the most important qualification is self-evidently customer orientated attitude. One should also consider every problem as an opportunity rather than a defeat. Being open minded and a team player makes one a very good candidate for Customer Operations.
What excites and challenges you in your daily work?
What inspires me most is to see how professional my team is. We process and handle several hun-dred of transactions each day, serve our customer by replying to their queries from confirmations, settlements, nettings to market value reports etc. We also maintain some of the static data for Markets Trading systems. This requires a wide range of knowledge and capability to work under pressure. On top of this we bring up a lot of issues and ideas to the PMB (Performance Management Board), and when we together find a solution that improves our processes for the benefit of our customers, is just fantastic! One great benefit of having worked all these years in the bank is that I have got to know a lot of great colleagues in many different parts of Nordea. With them it is easy to live up One Nordea Team.