New European Banking Authority guidelines offer catalyst for change to outsourcing arrangements

Following consultation in the second half of 2018, the European Banking Authority (EBA) has published its final report on draft guidelines for outsourcing arrangements. The report contains both the guidelines at pages 17-55 and the EBA’s feedback on the public consultation at pages 68-125.

Most provisions of the guidelines will enter into force on September 30, 2019. At the same time, the guidelines will replace those issued by the EBA’s predecessor organisation, the Committee of European Banking Supervisors (CEBS), in 2006 and will also incorporate the EBA’s 2017 recommendations on outsourcing to cloud service providers which came into effect on July 1, 2018.

The guidelines are intended to establish a more harmonised framework for financial institutions that are within the scope of the EBA’s mandate. They apply to credit institutions and investment firms which are subject to the Capital Requirements Directive(CRD) as well as to payment and electronic money (e-money) institutions.

To introduce further harmonisation, the guidelines reference the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive II (MiFID II) in their use of “critical or important function” in relation to outsourcing, and also acknowledge Solvency II and the revised Payment Services Directive (PSD2).

Member states’ competent authorities and financial institutions “must make every effort to comply” with the guidelines. The EBA has, however, acknowledged the need for proportionality, so that a firm and its competent authority(s) should have regard to the nature, scale and complexity of the firm’s activities when complying, or in the case of competent authorities, monitoring, compliance.

The guidelines set out a regime applicable to outsourcing arrangements, covering matters ranging from governance and policy to risk assessment, due diligence, contracting, continuous oversight, business continuity plans and exit strategy.

For many firms, the finalisation of the guidelines will be a catalyst for a significant programme to review (and potentially rationalise or change) existing outsourcing arrangements. Below we discuss some points for firms to consider as they plan for implementation. Continue reading

New Government Outsourcing Playbook

Outsourcing has become an increasingly fraught activity, with a number of high-profile events such as the collapse of Carillion dominating the news cycle in recent months.  The launch of the Government Outsourcing Playbook is in part an acknowledgment of, and a response to, the heightened scrutiny that is being applied to outsourcing practices in general and public sector outsourcing in particular.  It also coincides with updates and releases of a number of other sourcing-related guidance notes and recent tweaks to the well-known Model Services Contract to address matters related to interpretation of EU law post-Brexit. Continue reading

Time to Mobilise: EBA finalises Guidelines on Outsourcing Arrangements

Following consultation in the second half of 2018, the European Banking Authority (“EBA“) published its Final Report on Draft Guidelines on Outsourcing Arrangements (the “Guidelines“) on 25 February 2019.

Most provisions of the Guidelines will enter into force on 30 September 2019. At the same time, the Guidelines will replace those issued by the EBA’s predecessor organisation, the Committee of European Banking Supervisors (“CEBS“), in 2006 and will also incorporate the EBA’s 2017 Recommendation on Outsourcing to Cloud Service Providers which came into effect on 1 July 2018. Continue reading

EBA publishes guidance on (i) outsourcing to cloud service providers and (ii) ICT Risk Assessment by competent authorities

On 18 May 2017, the European Banking Authority (“EBA“) published its draft recommendations on outsourcing to cloud service providers (the “EBA Recommendations“). Under Article 16 of the Regulation (EU) No 1093/2010, the EBA is required to issue guidelines and recommendations addressed to both national competent authorities (NCAs) and financial institutions, with a view to establishing consistent, efficient and effective supervisory practices and ensuring the “common, uniform and consistent application of the European Union Law”.

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UK Outsourcing market hits record levels

Global technology research and advisory firm Information Services Group (“ISG“) recently published its findings on the global outsourcing and “as-a-service” industry for commercial and public sector contracts for the first quarter of 2017.

The findings show that the combined traditional sourcing and as-a-service annual contract value (ACV) award for the commercial market in Europe, the Middle East and Asia (EMEA) reached € 3.5 billion in the first quarter (up more than 19% sequentially year on year) – the as-a-service ACV rising steadily as organisations increasingly embrace digital solutions (increasing by 48% compared to last year) and traditional sourcing also increasing with an ACV award of € 2.5 billion.

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