Painfully slow technology

New joiner here - started FT in August at a BB.

I did the internship virtually last summer and don't recall any technological speed bumps.

But this year, I can't even put into words how many mind-numbing headaches have been caused by the technical issues I have to deal with on a daily basis. I suspect the main culprit is our Virtual Desktop, but not entirely sure.

Often throughout the day, Excel/Powerpoint will crash, it'll take literal minutes to load up a graph or open a big doc. Outlook crashes too and sometimes it takes way too long to send out a simple email. Bloomberg glitches on basically a daily basis.

The frustrating thing is I do like my job and my team, but the amount of time it takes to complete a task is drastically raised simply because of tech issues.

I know there's nothing really to be done about this situation on my end, but I was wondering if this is happening at other banks?

Comments (48)

  • Senior VP in IB-M&A
1y 

They make you use Microsoft products via a virtual desktop session? That's idiotic.

  • 1
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
1y 

Are JPM and GS known to have slow tech? Pretty surprised to hear that, tbh

  • Intern in IB-M&A
1y 

Oh noooooooooo, this doesn't bode well for the summer lmao

  • Analyst 1 in IB - CB
1y 

All Virtual Machines are ran through a server, so there is naturally a lot of lag when using the VM. It sucks. There is a lot of input lag and VM specs are pretty shit with low ram typically. Makes for an annoying ass combo when dealing with large files or having a lot of programs open. My BB has the same issue but you just learn to deal with it

  • Analyst 2 in PE - LBOs
1y 

Same…

  • 1
  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
1y 

It's so awful

  • 1
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
9mo 

Bro it's literally hell, takes Excel 6 years to load lmfao

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
1y 

Defo DB..

1y 
TheBuellerBanker, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Haha fairly sure this is at a bulge. Most banks give laptops which don't require a virtual desktop but rather a simple VPN connection. But have heard horror stories from my friends at bulges which only use desktops and thereby screw over those working from home due to having to use the virtual desktop which is literally the worst.

  • 3
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
1y 

lol we have laptops AND have to remote in via a virtual desktop :(

  • 1
1y 
Kevin25, what's your opinion? Comment below:

why would you need virtual desktop? I work from home and we just upload models and slides to Teams groups. don't even need VPN.

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Cov
1y 

I have probably lost whole hours of work over the last few months because of the random restarts when you try and save down a file that's too big for VMware to handle. I also have this issue where sometimes certain kinds of PDF just won't open on my machine, literally the other day had to read through initiation coverage on my iPhone because my computer decided it didn't want to open it.

  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
9mo 

Literally the bane of my existence lmfao

Funniest
1y 
MrBarelyComprehensible, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Not a good look when people are name dropping every bank in this thread

  • 29
  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
1y 

Happens at my MM bank... Virtual desktops only (even for laptops). Such a pain in the ass was seriously considering quitting and going to another bank. Not happy to see almost every other bank has the same problem.. Lol

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
1y 

agreed. makes me feel relief in a way that it's not just my bank, but also kind of dejected that this seems to plague a big part of the industry. 

  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
1y 

Yeah, no doubt. Nothing worse than working late and the p.o.s. computer keeps crashing / taking forever to load. Honestly faster to just use my mouse because of the keyboard lag. Pretty absurd. Have been close to making a few holes in the walls during those 3am nights...

  • 1
1y 
Portnoy's Complaint, what's your opinion? Comment below:

This is everywhere. I am at a loss for why firms don't take a few million and get all analysts high end gaming-level rigs with the fastest possible connection. Really feel like slow comps and crashing software contributes to mental stress and mindless tasks. 

Will say though - make sure you name scrub your excels! delete external links! delete names! ctrl-F ".xlsx" and delete the shit out of it.  If you copied an old popular template, you will have hidden external URLs the computer is trying to ping from like 10 years ago. Old equity analyst models or internal file names - just absolute killers of time. 

Array

  • 4
1y 
Kevin25, what's your opinion? Comment below:

sorry why would you use Virtual Desktop?

if you open Excel files from your desktop, and they crash it means either:

1) the excel file is built with heavy formulas and/or has external links - in this case build models more elegantly and kill external links (bring data sources as data tabs with just values)

2) laptop is old and slow - ask the company to replace or buy your own

3) you caught a virus cause you use your work laptop to pirate shit and/or watch porn - don't do that. have a laptop for work and a laptop for entertainment.

  • Analyst 1 in Consulting
1y 

Lol seems like every BB is mentioned here

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
1y 

thank goodness, we all need a bit of hope

  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
1y 

Could probably cut my working hours by at least 20% if the IT wasn't so terrible. Literally spend half my life waiting for shit to open or troubleshooting IT errors.

  • 2
1y 
InvestmentBonkers42, what's your opinion? Comment below:

N1 at a BB and this has been my single biggest complaint since starting the job. And the single thing I was most dumbstruck by. I genuinely cannot believe how slow the systems at some of the most important leading financial institutions are. And given the value of a banker's time, you'd think it would be worth the investment to fix these systems up. I could increase efficiency by 30% JUST by having my Virtual Desktop PPT and Excel go at the speed as my personal computer's PPT and Excel.

  • 1
1y 
Legion42, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I think the issue is you have a tech leadership is from an older generation and they are resistant to change because that would mean more work for them to understand new processes. 

  • 2
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
1y 

that's actually a very good point 

  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
1y 

I disagree. The seniors aren't the ones dealing in the trenches with PPT and XLS. All they see is how best can they, theoretically, keep information protected. The solution is VMWare and shitty safety installations that make these computers run slow as shit  

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
1y 

What it ultimately boils down that the banks are cheap af when it comes to this stuff

1y 
EBITDAX_addbacks, what's your opinion? Comment below:

This only changed at my firm when juniors started dropping like flies and they were citing tech as a top reason for their departure. Fortunately my company responded with a new laptop pilot program with significantly upgraded hardware. I messaged the admin who was running it and sweet talked her into escalating my request and literally overnight my download speed on VPN went from 3 Mbps to 15 Mbps, I had no more random Excel hangups or crashes, and I went from I believe 8gb of RAM to 32gb with a massive cpu upgrade. My download speed on VPN pales in comparison to when I'm off it (200Mbps) so the network is still needing work and my upload speed is still trash so navigating the shared drives can be difficult but it's much better than it was. On the whole, my entire LIFE (not just my work) has improved massively and I've probably lowered my overall stress level by a third. If the tech was the same as it was 18 months ago, I would have quit by now.

If you do manage to get upgrades, make sure you reach out to the seniors individually that are running the program and tell them what a massive QoL improvement it is. They will use your individual feedback to reinforce that they made a good choice and this will in turn incentivize them to continue upgrading junior tech. Make sure you're voicing these issues to your direct managers and group heads...They're often too far removed to know how important this shit is to our efficiency and more importantly our sanity.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Cov
1y 

that's very encouraging. just curious - how big is your firm?

9mo 
laojuntasa, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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  • Associate 1 in IB - Gen
9mo 

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