Post Covid transformation of technology in Banking & Finance

Rana Biswas, APAC Sales Head, EquisoftPassionate about building businesses from ground-up, Rana excels in designing resourceful measures and strategies that lead to huge cost savings, reduction in turnaround times and substantiated long lasting impact.

The technology landscape across the globe has witnessed a dynamic shift due to the pandemic unleashed by the pandemic. Companies from several industries are reinventing systems and processes for a digital work environment and have started investing heavily on digital platforms. Efficiencies of important customer-facing processes and back-office operations are being enhanced with the use of digital and web-enabled software and processes. Organizations in the BFSI segment in India are much ahead of most other industries with respect to their IT preparedness and digital processes. Retail Banks and Insurance companies now commonly use enterprise apps for their Sales teams (for solicitation and onboarding) and for their existing customers (for various service related queries). Recently several banks and credit card issuers have also launched the V-KYC (video based KYC) which completely eliminates the in-person visit for physical verification of the prospect.

CIOs of BFSI companies are now fast-tracking their existing projects on digital technology which are now must-haves in this new normal. Many companies have new budgets being allocated for projects related to strengthening or replacing their existing digital and web enabled platforms both on the front-end and the back-end of the value-chain. The
industry now realizes how important it is to have a seamless interface and integration across the entire wing-to-wing IT process for their companies. Moreover, existing and prospective customers are also leaning more towards doing their transactions/queries on the apps as there is a sharp dip in the desire for face to face interactions; this is certainly a positive development for the BFSI sector.

Traditionally, the BFSI sector has always relied heavily on the in-person face-to-face meetings between the Financial Advisors / Relationship Managers and prospective clients for closure of sales owing to the relative complexity of the financial products. However, we are now witnessing a dramatic change in this model. While video calls were possible earlier, they were rarely used. Now, webinars and video calls are replacing in-person meetings. Virtual demonstrations of the modus operandi of financial products are gaining popularity. Most importantly, we see a substantial change in the customers’ mindset from physical to digital.

CIOs of BFSI companies are now fast-tracking their existing projects on digital technology which are now must-haves in this new normal

The industry is looking at a nimble-footed, agile and customer-centric technology that can prove to be a game-changer in their business and give them an edge over competition. According to the 2019 Bain & Co. APAC Insurance Report, insurers that prosper in Asia will take a “today forward, future back” approach. ‘Today forward’ means understanding customer expectations and global trends, and using state-of-the-art digital technology to make business better, cheaper and faster right now. Insurers typically focus on three to five well-defined initiatives that can get the company on a firm path to the future in each market where it does business. If ‘today forward’ is made up of thoughtful doers, ‘future back’ belongs to artful dreamers. They envision the future of insurance from the perspective of a technology-driven evolution of products and services. They imagine what insurance will look like in 10 or 20 years from now, then work on the required steps today to prepare the company to compete in that future world. Globally, we see advancements in technology continuing to develop at a very fast pace as customer expectations continue to evolve. Systems need to be linked to data feeds so that information can flow freely where and when it is needed. Hence, the immediate priority for insurance and wealth management leaders is to catch up by building the right foundation to allow systems integration, accelerate product innovation, meet heightened customer expectations, and compete with newborn digital insurance technology startups.