26 January 2024
Dilip Kumar Chandrasekaran has worked on projects with some of the top brands in the financial services sector. He spoke to Consultancy.org about his first twelve months at Varrlyn and how he helps clients deal with the risks of a growing regulatory burden.
Ever since the start of his career in India, more than 15 years ago, Dilip Kumar Chandrasekaran has been fascinated by the world of consulting. Not only did it give him the opportunity to apply his academic expertise (he holds a bachelor in mechanical engineering), but it also gave him a chance to travel the world, helping and teaching other people.
After periods with IT consulting giants Cognizant and Infosys, Dilip was handed the opportunity to move across continents, working as a consultant & project manager on engagements in the Netherlands and United Kingdom.
Eventually, the roles led him to join one of the country’s largest banks in 2017 as a business analyst. After working with ING through the pandemic, he felt the time was right to return to consulting. “I was in consulting for many years. During Covid-19 I had taken up permanent positions to gain experience at the other side of the table. But it is great to be back in action as a consultant.”
Exactly this month last year, Dilip joined Varrlyn in its Amsterdam team. The Netherlands-origin consulting firm specialises in business information technology within the financial services industry – a perfect fit for Dilip’s particular skill-set.
Dilip has worked extensively in Risk and Compliance with a focus on financial economic crime, as a certified anti-money laundering and transaction monitoring specialist.
Due to the ever-evolving nature of digital crime, and the rise of regulations, financial economic crime is a rapidly growing segment with the European financial services industry. To meet demand for expertise and talent, financial institutions are turning to the consulting sector for counsel. This is something Dilip has seen first-hand since arriving at Varrlyn – and has helped him to expand his own expertise even further.
“I have done various implementations and projects in anti-money laundering, sanctions, regulatory risk and compliance,” he explains. “The projects, and the challenges in the projects, have been interesting. These challenges always give a new perspective and a new learning. I keep learning every day.”
Focusing on streamlining and digitising complex financial processes, Varrlyn has supported projects at some of the financial services industry’s biggest names – including the likes of ABN Amro, ING, NatWest, Deutsche Bank, and Aegon.
According to Dilip, Varrlyn has given him full “freedom and trust” during the projects he has so far been involved with.
His current project is at APG Asset Management – one of the world’s largest pension investors. Managing more than €580 billion, the group provides the pensions for more than 4.8 million people on behalf of several Dutch pension funds – so making sure that it properly monitors risk is incredibly important.
“APG Asset Management is present in 99 jurisdictions, as a result it has to comply and report in each jurisdiction, which brings a wide range of different rules and disclosure methods. In the last nine months I have contributed to the implementation of a sanctions monitoring solution – which is now live.”
“Late last year, I have been given additional responsibility for substantial shareholding disclosures, which are also a complex regulatory requirement. APG Asset Management has a mandatory mandate from regulators to comply with this regulation. There’s a lot at stake!”
Despite the complex task at hand, Dilip feels he always can fall back on the team at Varrlyn. “The best part of the job is the encouragement and support I get from Varrlyn, which helps ensure the best results for clients.”
Having been working in Europe for more than a decade, Dilip has had plenty of time to consider the differences in working culture between the Netherlands and India. Broadly, he notes a big difference in how work is perceived and managed. “Varrlyn plays a great role in being a good employer and ensuring there is a good work-life balance for its people.”