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Tip #20: Four Eyes Approval

To reduce operational risk, having a process in place where 2 people must approve changes to data can be a good idea or even a necessity in some organizations. SimCorp’s Four Eyes Approval uses the audit trail to keep track of any changes to reference data, static data, and market data and allows you to set up an approval mechanism where another user must approve the change. It is possible to define on a very granular level what fields should be considered in the four eyes approval. For more on Dimension’s audit trail, please see Tip #18: Audit Trails.

Unfortunately, the approval process in SimCorp Dimension does not have a concept of active/inactive data. Meaning as soon as a change has been made it is active and will be the record used in transactions and evaluations, regardless of whether the record has been approved or not. In other words, the approval process is merely an after-the-fact online report that does not prevent unapproved changes from being used in calculations, trading, etc.

In the Four Eyes Priority Users, you define which users should be excluded from the four eyes control process. Here you can define individual users or user types. Normally this would be relevant only for the user type Batch, but you might want to create a special batch user that is used when importing data from your data provider and then have this user excluded. That way any other batch loads that change data are included in the four eyes control.

Activating the windows and fields that should be checked is done in the Four Eyes Configuration window. In the tree structure, you can drill down to a very delicate level, right-click, and enable four eyes on windows and fields. We recommend enabling as few items as possible, and adding more as you become familiar with the module and as needs arise. For example, start with the 10 most business-critical windows and go from there. You can enable an entire node or sub-node and then disable lower nodes. The search function in the lower right corner of the window can be useful to look for tables. Enter a name and press the previous or next button. The search can be broad, so try to narrow it down as much as possible. In previous versions you could not transport the configuration from this window to other environments, but with the Configuration Manager this is now possible, not only the Four Eyes Configuration, but also other related windows as well as Audit Configuration.

In the Four Eyes Approval window, you can load records pending approval, review changes, view data (which opens the corresponding SCD window), and approve. When data is loaded you can go through history and see who changed what and when. In this window, you can also load data of already approved changes, even by individual. Data in this table can easily grow out of control, which is why it is important to have a clear procedure established and team members available to review and approve changes. The more tables enabled, and the more changes made, the more important this gets.

If you are using the four-eyes functionality, we would love to hear from you. What is your experience using the module and what would you like to see different?



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