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Welcome to the final installment of our series on choosing the right data partner. In our previous post, we examined the total cost of ownership (TCO) and the complexities and expenses involved in acquiring, managing, and maintaining an options data infrastructure. Now, we’ll delve into the crucial aspect of technical infrastructure and other services that are essential for operating effectively and honing your trading edge. 


Understanding Your Technical Needs 

When evaluating a data partner, it’s imperative to examine their infrastructure capabilities to ensure they align with your current and potential needs. This starts with the capabilities of their options data and the necessary infrastructure, whether managed by your in-house IT staff or an external vendor. 

First, consider what level of technical services your options data requires. It’s important to determine how you will receive the data and integrate it into your systems. Assess the type of connectivity you have or need, including the required speed or latency. If connectivity doesn’t exist, you need the ability to quickly and efficiently configure it. Additionally, ensure the infrastructure supports your specific options strategies. 


Infrastructure Essentials 

Primary infrastructure considerations include technical delivery and business continuity. Your data partner should offer versatile delivery options, such as easy-to-integrate APIs and protocols ranging from multicast to TCP. Readily available support is crucial to ensure your focus remains on trading rather than IT issues. Assessing the provider’s capabilities and plans for recovering from both large-scale disasters and small-scale shutdowns is also essential. Understand the time it takes for a disabled system to automatically switch to a redundant system to ensure minimal disruption to your operations. 



Other Services 

Beyond infrastructure, other adjacent services from a data partner can significantly impact your trading operations. Hosting and co-location options should vary to meet current and future needs, balancing latency, risk, and cost. Cloud-based hosting options can be particularly beneficial, offering both software needs and feed handling for low-latency trading. 

Managed services have evolved from the old break/fix model to anticipate needs, maintain functionality, and actively improve it over time. Additionally, managing exchange fees, connectivity costs, and tracking suppliers can be complex and burdensome. Some data providers offer strategies and expertise to help manage these expenses efficiently. 



In conclusion, choosing the right data partner requires a holistic approach, considering all the questions and criteria described above. Your trading needs and desired outcomes should guide the evaluation process, ensuring the vendor you select can answer these fundamental questions and help you maximize the value of your options data. 

As you navigate the complexities of selecting a data partner, remember that the right infrastructure and services are pivotal in maintaining your trading edge. By considering these factors carefully, you can find a data partner capable of meeting your needs both now and in the future. 

Thank you for following our series on choosing the right data partner. We hope this information has been helpful in guiding your decision-making process. For more insights and detailed discussions, stay tuned to our blog. 



About SpiderRock Gateway Technologies  

SpiderRock Gateway Technologies (“SpiderRock”) is the data and analytics division of SpiderRock Technology Solutions, a provider of industry-leading options trading solutions. SpiderRock is an exchange-licensed redistributor of market data, providing US stocks, options, and futures market data in a raw and normalized format. SpiderRock’s proprietary live analytics offer low-cost delivery of market data and options analytics without requiring clients to make a significant investment in infrastructure.   

For more information, please visit www.spiderrock.net/data, follow us on Twitter at @SpiderRockChi, and visit our LinkedIn Page

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