How Moody’s Investors Service's tech-and data-driven platform meets decision makers’ needs through turbulent times
In a global economy, industry experts have often stressed the criticality of governance, visibility and tracking to ensure real growth; and the importance of a solution that helps finance professionals maintain a constant record of a company’s activities, over a platform built around periodic updates.
Moody’s Investors Service, which won Best Credit Ratings Agency at the 2022 CorporateTreasurer Awards, has ticked quite a few of these boxes. It has taken an innovative approach and deployed technology-driven solutions that help decision makers navigate a safe path through global turmoil and volatility.
This is particularly relevant in 2022, which has been an unusually tumultuous year, given the after-effects of the Covid-19 pandemic and the destabilising impact of the Russia-Ukraine crisis on the world.
Moody’s has long adopted this approach to customer commitment, even before the uncertainties of the past couple of years. Describing this approach, Kenneth Tam, Moody’s vice president of Asia Pacific marketing, said, “It is what our customers want in our day-to-day relationship with them, and it is a high standard to which we hold ourselves. We value our customers and seek to provide the highest quality of analysis, expertise, professionalism and service.”
Customer commitment at Moody’s is built on the following five pillars:
- An experienced team: This includes having a qualified lead analyst on call, a senior manager with overall responsibility for the relationship who responds quickly to feedback, and analytical continuity to ensure that a client’s business remains unimpacted by changes within the team.
- A clear process: Explanations are provided at the outset about the rating process along with periodic updates on the progress of the analysis, including a timeline on when the results can be expected.
- A transparent assessment: Moody’s publishes its methodology, on top of apprising clients about the key drivers for a given rating. These include its views on credit strengths and challenges, key financial metrics and quantitative measures, as well as an assessment of factors likely to cause a rating change in the medium term.
- A proactive and continued engagement: Moody’s proactively initiates engagement with its clients, walking the line between being responsive to their needs and not making extraordinary demands on their time.
- Timely research: Moody’s publishes timely, independent and insightful research, and provides its customers with other research that may be of interest or relevant to them.
To deliver on these commitments, Moody’s launched its global IssuerFocus platform in Asia Pacific in November 2021. This came on the heels of a global rollout after the platform’s successful launch in the United States in October 2019.
“IssuerFocus is a secure, cloud-based platform connecting our issuer customers with the ratings and research information they need, whenever they want. It provides a single point of access for ratings, research, selected peer information, and insights into investor interest. Our customers benefit from a curated and customised experience with these key features: 24/7 access; user-friendly, real-time updates viewable on desktop, mobile and tablet; customised preferences and alerts; and downloadable peer data,” said Tam.
The offering was designed based on feedback from issuers and is complimentary for Moody’s customers.
This platform keeps the issuer perspective front and centre. It allows Moody’s customers access to information in four main categories: ratings, research, selected peers, and investor interest.
The ratings section helps customers check their credit strength and challenges. This allows a quick analysis of factors that could potentially influence an upgrade or downgrade. Viewing credit in multiple ways helps users understand the drivers that can impact credit quality — from rating methodology to scorecard. The ratings experience also helps customers get a snapshot view of their upcoming maturities, which assists them in monitoring detailed information about debt instruments to gain a more complete view of their credit profile.
The research section grants customers access to content that is relevant to their organisation, including information on the sector as well as its peers. It allows them to explore key themes affecting global credit markets and access Moody’s latest publications relevant to their sector.
With the peers section, customers have easy access to Moody’s defined set of peers. This group can be customised with up to 15 additional corporate organisations rated by Moody’s. It helps issuers evaluate their performance against tangible data using tools that enable metric comparisons against other organisations.
Finally, the investor interest section gives customers a view into how attractive their organisations are to investors, via a personalised tool that documents how often their ratings and research are accessed on the Moody’s website. There is a fair amount of granularity in this data, which helps Moody’s customers gain insight into the type of investors interested in their company and where they are located. The investor interest segment also enables a comparison of a customer’s firm against its peers in the sector through trend analysis on Moody’s website.
Through push notifications and alerts, IssuerFocus helps customers keep track of their own organisation, peers and sectoral trends.
“Moody’s is a global integrated risk assessment firm that believes that greater transparency, more informed decisions and fair access to information, open the door to shared progress. IssuerFocus forms part of our mission to provide trusted insights and standards that help decision makers act with confidence, identifying opportunities and managing the risks of doing business with others,” said Tam.
For further reading on Moody's Investors Service, please visit its website.