Fixing Our Customer’s Broken Fraud Models in 30 Minutes


A SpecTrust customer recently approached our Product Success team with a problem: their fraud assessment models were broken. This customer operated a marketplace with seller partners, and as it turns out, received address data from its partners in two different data formats. Their fraud models only accepted one of these formats. This data conflict caused an increase in failed assessments, which in turn resulted in higher costs from repeat model runs. Worst of all, the customer was exposed to unnecessary fraud risk. The initial estimate for their partner to implement a fix came back as “several weeks, but we’re not sure.” The customer felt that building their own solution would also take weeks as well.

And therein lies the problem.

The reality is that this “it’s gonna take 30 days to implement a solution” situation isn’t rare. Modifying existing technologies or building new ones from scratch takes time. To understand why something that seems like a small engineering effort would take so long, you have to look no further than the common software development process used at nearly all companies.

Dev Cycles Can Delay Fixes

For most organizations, implementing any technology solution requires a significant cross-functional effort involving Product Management, Engineering, Quality Assurance, Release Management, and Technical Operations. The typical process workflow looks like:

  1. Product Management validates the problem/solution business case
  2. Engineering scopes the level of effort necessary to develop the solution
  3. Quality Assurance scopes the level of effort necessary to test the solution
  4. Engineering develops the solution
  5. Quality Assurance tests the solution
  6. Release Management plans and releases the solution into production
  7. Technical Operations takes ownership of maintaining the solution moving forward

Even in the most nimble of software development companies, the “time-to-value” of implementing a solution to our customer’s problem is measured in weeks. For larger companies where software development isn’t the core competency, the “time-to-value” is measured in months. Regardless of whether it’s weeks or months, the business is stuck accepting the fraud risk exposure while it waits on the solution.

Fortunately, our customer could call on SpecTrust’s Product Success team to deliver a solution through the SpecTrust ROAM platform.

Our New TPM Took 2 Hours to Deliver A Solution

After a brief discussion with our Product Success team, our customer decided that the simplest solution was to use SpecTrust ROAM to orchestrate a new integration with Smarty’s Address Verification API that coincidentally spit out a normalized format for their fraud assessment models. We were able to configure a production-ready integration with the desired Address Verification API in a matter of 2 hours.

Of course, 2 hours still isn’t 30 minutes. Here’s why we needed an extra 1.5 hours: One of our Technical Project Managers (TPM) configured the Smarty integration. 

Our Product Success Team Delivers in 30 Minutes

The TPM had no prior experience using the SpecTrust Integration Station and does not have an extensive background in software development. Yet, the TPM was able to fully configure and test the integration on their own using the final 30 minutes of a 2-hour training workshop.

Our customer was able to have a solution built and in place within a matter of minutes, thereby eliminating the failures in their fraud assessment models.

Problem solved.

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