Lab49, part of ION Group, is a global strategy, design and technology consulting company specializing in capital markets. We were founded in 2002 and have a deep pool of business and technology talent. We specialize in helping clients realize rapid transformational change at an industrial scale and operate historically towards the upper tiers of banking and capital markets, to include banks, hedge funds and exchanges; assisting those companies with their most key strategic business programs and technology investments.
We build applications. Fast applications. We engineer the most forward-thinking financial systems in the industry. Think advanced visualizations, think complex systems integration, think massive data flows for all kinds of financial services players, from small start-ups to large banks, from hedge funds to asset managers.
It is a challenge—your peers will push you, and you will grow in leaps and bounds that are impossible in traditional organizations. You will work among the brightest and most passionate people in the industry—some of them are thought-leaders; others have won awards.
As a consultant, you will see a multitude of technologies, organizations, and projects—you will learn a lot in a very short period of time. You will work with bleeding-edge tech in a variety of contexts. More than 95% of our projects are greenfield. You will meet clients and advise them, you will work with our cross-functional teams to come up with a solution, and then you'll design and build it. You will have impact and agency.
We are a flat meritocracy with an engineering mindset—what matters is how good you are and how well you and your team deliver. Everyone designs, everyone codes, everyone is hands-on.
We entrepreneurial and agile—there is a lot of opportunity to take accountability and grow quickly. You can progress from an individual contributor to a project lead, then on to a team lead, eventually running engagements and becoming a strategic adviser to our clients in a short period of time.
We are privately held, successful, and growing rapidly - clients globally are turning to us to solve their most challenging business, technology and design problems. We are adding adding lots of engineering staff in all our locations.
We are exclusively focused on the finance domain—there are plenty of areas where technology is a competitive advantage, and our clients turn to us when they need more innovative solutions.
The engineering practice is a flat organization. Having said that, every engineer has a line manager, who is a senior engineer, and no manager has more than 6 reports. Most of our engineers are senior, compared to the general population of engineers on the market.
We take the Agile methodology seriously. Far beyond the rituals of iteration, stand up, etc., we focus on generating true business value with a commercial mindset. We invest in automated testing, from unit tests to end-to-end tests, not simply to claim we test, but because it improves the productivity and the quality of our products.
Within every project, the team is mostly self-organizing and has a large degree of freedom in establishing their standards on the project, as long as it is reasonable and does not jeopardize quality. When a team requires professional support/guidance, it will get it from the senior engineers.
All engineers review each other’s code, and internal discussion is encouraged. No one’s code is beyond reviewing. This results in a healthy synergy and a quicker pathway to professional growth.
Lab49 is a trailblazer for technology transformations within our clients. We use cutting edge tools and patterns to provide the best solutions for our clients.
Whether it’s trading, risk, complex compliance requirements, analytics – we do it all. We go to the client, analyze a complex problem in various domains – what are the requirements, the current state, and what do they need to change. Next, we recommend a strategic solution, and finally, we often implement this solution for them. The result is that most of our projects are “greenfield”, and our engineers significantly impact the decisions regarding the implementation.
Sample Business and Technical Challenges
Product Diversity: • Addressing the diverse requirements across asset classes in many different global businesses
Workflow & Auditability: • Instrumenting flows of data for full transparency and chains of review and approval
Data Governance & Compliance: • Creating the right framework for ensuring data is being managed appropriately by the right people Distribution & Replication: • Disseminating shared data across a large number of systems and geographies
Change Management: • Rolling out technology capabilities to users with minimum disruption and maximum engagement Scalability & Performance: • Making certain large amounts of data are stored efficiently with a minimum amount of latency
Data Quality & Timeliness: • Ensuring business critical data is always right and available at the right time
Availability & Failover: • Guaranteeing systems will play their required role in a seamless manner across all businesses globally
We could have described the technologies we are currently using, but then we would have to update it quite frequently. Instead, suffice to say, we are always on the cusp of the latest popular trends in software.
DevOps at Financial Services company
DevOps best practices and tooling are ingrained in everything we do, as they are required for us to innovate at speed. Continuous integration, validation, and deployment reduce risk and ensure quality as we ship demonstrable value to users in an acceptance environment at the end of every sprint on projects like WIRE at Fannie Mae.
Historically, releasing new capabilities to higher environments at Fannie Mae has involved a significant number of handoff delays and required a material amount of recurring manual testing effort. These delays create schedule and quality risk for the business, as feedback from users is delayed and defects are caught much later than they could be.
Lab49 has directly contributed to the advancement of enterprise DevOps Value Chain capabilities owned by Development Services by:
• Improving Enterprise CI/CD capabilities informed by lessons learned via applying them in the context of a greenfield application (WIRE); • Helping to accelerate definition of an onboarding plan for an existing application (Transaction Model); and • Partnering with Fannie Mae to design a hands-on training curriculum to accelerate adoption.
Delivery of a Trading Application
Our customer faced many of the same Agile adoption challenges that other large financial services organizations struggle with.
• Several days to onboard new developers with required tech stack • Manual deployment of application • Manual configuration through notes rewritten for each deployment • Database schema managed by hand with inconsistencies between environments • Manual end-to-end Exploratory Testing only • No code reviews
Lab49 led the definition and exemplification of enterprise DevOps standards through our partnership.
• Single-command developer onboarding, with developers working from 5 locations • A highly parallelized build pipeline, using build slaves dynamically created on demand from container images • Container-based build of various app layers – all deployable artifacts residing within container images • Configuration across all infrastructure and environments versioned with code • Database schema automated and audited, eliminating inconsistencies • Mandatory code reviews on every PR • Automated tests for services, integration tests, and end-to-end tests
Transformational FX target-state architecture analysis
A major financial institution engaged Lab49 to assist in defining a new target-state architecture for their global FX business, focused on building and deploying regionalized, low-latency, scalable, customer-facing applications.
Challenge The institution’s existing legacy architecture limited the competitiveness of its FX trading business.
A re-envisioned architecture required a global perspective on how to deliver new digital experiences to the firm’s institutional and corporate customer base.
Key areas of focus included the future state NFR’s, strategy to support the globally distributed FX markets business, data regionalization, and minimum infrastructure required.
The institution needed a partner capable of independently validating, critiquing, and guiding the definition of a recommended target-state architecture, while ensuring anti-patterns were avoided and benchmarked to global best practice methods and standards.
Solution Using an established iterative framework of investigation, Lab49 initiated the program by planning the scope, followed by a deep discovery phase with deployment of multiple disciplines (client-side, server-side, infrastructure architects), running parallel streams of technical/business workshops.
Themes of investigation included: NFR performance & suitability for the business goals (latency targets, capacity, concurrency, reliability, etc.); container and application plug-in strategies; entitlements; price distribution and data regionalization (data cache, failure scenarios, etc.); the minimum viable architecture; proposed target-state architecture; and best practice SDLC required.
All findings and recommendations were synthesized in the final week with endorsement and ratification by architecture systems and business owners.
We are passionate about technology and driven to innovate in order to serve our clients. Think of us as a brain-trust that loves to collaborate on interesting projects. We consider our employees our greatest resource. In fact, most solutions to the complex and thorny problems we face are accessible in the knowledge-base and experience of our colleagues.
Coffee, Tea, Soda, Fruit, Healthy Snacks in three employee kitchens.
Beautiful, modern office in the top two floors of our building with stunning views of Central Park.
Medical (two plans), Dental, Vision from first day of employment.
100% match up to 3% of your base salary.
Monthly company-wide social events.
Periodic after-work enrichment workshops on new technologies and methodologies.
We offer a relocation package if you need to move to the area.
You can pay for your transportation and parking with pre-tax dollars.
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