A Checklist for Fund Managers to Ensure Adequate Vendor Management

Fund managers may outsource certain tasks or operations to third parties, such as fund administrators, auditors, cybersecurity experts, pricing services and valuation agents. If they do not adequately supervise or manage those vendors, however, they may run into problems – and even face enforcement actions. Broker-dealers have a similar duty to properly supervise third-party vendors. FINRA recently released a regulatory notice (Notice) to remind member firms of their supervisory duties as to those vendors. That Notice reiterates the applicable regulatory obligations; summarizes recent trends in examination findings, observations and disciplinary actions; and provides questions member firms may consider when evaluating their systems, procedures and controls relating to vendor management. Although the Notice is geared toward broker-dealers, its guidance is generally applicable to fund managers’ oversight and management of their vendors. This article summarizes the Notice and provides a checklist created from the questions at the end of the Notice that all fund managers can use to assess the sufficiency of their vendor management procedures and controls. See our articles containing checklists to assist managers with the following rules, concerns or topics: Form ADV, Part 2Aprivacy concerns as managers return to work; the pay to play rule; the advertising ruleNew York’s anti‑sexual harassment training requirementsSEC exam interviewsannual compliance program reviewsemployee disciplinary policies and procedures; and FATCA.

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