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Applications at the Speed of Low-Code

Adeel Javed, Manager, Intelligent Automation, OCC and Anum Ahmed, Business Systems Analyst, OCC
October 13, 2020

The COVID-19 global pandemic has added new urgency to the quest for digital transformation. The pandemic disrupted business processes and displaced and disconnected people. Organizations across the globe witnessed first-hand that the speed with which they could get new automations and applications in place could literally make or break the company.

The world quickly learned what some industry leaders already knew: the ability to develop an application and quickly bring it to market is crucial. At Options Clearing Corporation (OCC), the world's largest equity derivatives clearing organization, this practice of rapid digital transformation was already part of our DNA even in a pre-COVID world.

For those outside of the financial sector, OCC is the only central counterparty for all U.S. exchange-listed options trades. OCC works to help manage risk for those involved in options trading by providing stability and market integrity. We are also a leading provider of online, unbiased educational content for users of these markets.

Over the last five years ago, OCC has developed more than 20 mission-critical business applications on Appian's low-code automation platform, many of which support entire end-to-end processes across the organization. Our most recent deployment covers an internal attestation process.

Compliance is Paramount

As a Systemically Important Financial Market Utility (SIFMU), compliance is at the heart of what we do at OCC. On a routine basis, OCC performs reviews of our Internal Control environment and these reviews are accompanied by internal attestations. These controls consist of actions and activities that are an integral part of the OCC standards to reduce inherent risks in our processes every day.

The prior tool used by our Compliance department lacked process and data integration capabilities. The overall user experience was inefficient as users had to login to multiple systems to look at data before attesting.

Our goal was to deliver a solution for the attestation process that drives internal compliance, risk, and control accountability by presenting relevant data with rule-based recommendations and capturing comprehensive responses at a precise level.

Process Enhancements with Appian

While exploring potential platforms, we quickly found that Appian's low-code automation platform aligned well with OCC's business goals. Appian's platform enabled us to:

    • Automate the attestation process, making it transparent and auditable

    • Integrate with other systems to display all the necessary data in a single screen, giving end users all the data to make their decisions

    • Create a user interface to improve the overall experience with the process

    • Share data with our enterprise analytics system to provide valuable insights

Darci Trout, OCC's First Vice President, Adherence Monitoring and Business Controls and our business owner for the project, said it best:

"Transitioning the attestation process to Appian has improved our team's ability to facilitate and monitor the overall process and vastly improved user's ability to review a large amount of information from different systems, and identify any potential issues we want them to see, all while providing a more user-friendly experience."

Using Appian's low-code capabilities, we were able to automate this complicated process in eight weeks. Since porting over the process to Appian, we have seen significant reduction in the time it takes to complete an attestation cycle.

The numbers speak for themselves:

Applications at the Speed of Low-Code

The concept of delivering mission critical apps to market in such short times is nothing new for our team at OCC. We have been leveraging Appian's low-code platform for over five years, and to date have built over twenty apps. Our typical turnaround time for a new app is six to eight weeks. Five of these apps were actually built using our App in a Day concept, and you can learn more about that here: (

Appian's cloud-based platform unites BPM, Case Management, AI, and RPA, providing us with the full stack of tools required for rapidly developing, testing, and deploying any application our business may require. These easy-to-use tools allow our team to focus on solving business problems and reduce the time the team would spend managing technology and infrastructure.

If you want to learn more about how business applications can get to market faster, join our session at Appian Connect on October 20, 2020. Register now at

If you want to learn more about OCC, visit

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