There was a time in the past when the city slept for a couple of hours a day. Today, there is never a moment that is free of financial transactions or devoid of opportunities for banks and financial institutions to deliver another superlative customer experience. This is the digital age. An age where banks need to be everywhere and available all the time.
The statement, “Banks of the future will be omnipresent” is as much a cliché as “Change is the only constant”. Having said that, even this omnipresence is a journey that begins with yet another cliché – digital transformation. Having said this as well, 2020 will mark the turning point of this transformation into a carefully planned and well-laid-out journey that banks will begin to undertake.
A recent research by Infosys Finacle and Efma found a positive correlation between digital transformation and customer experience outcomes. More importantly, there is a clear distinction between how leaders and laggards are approaching transformation. In order to stay relevant and profitable in the digital age, banks will have to reimagine their engagements, operations, business models and culture – because the digital evolution isn’t merely at the customer-facing end or layer of the banking infrastructure. Our survey found that leaders are adopting a process of digital evolution to make their technology architecture a powerful enabler of their products, processes and organization to meet the demands of a rapidly changing marketplace while laggards are hesitant to make bold technology moves relegating their transformation efforts to elimination of paper-based processes.
While most leading banks have begun their core modernization, in 2020, all banks, large and small, will evaluate and modernize their technology and application architecture. The baby steps that will light the path for banks will ideally be analyzing the applications for proprietary or COTS products, or custom-built applications. A clear analysis of the application architecture in this way provides greater ease-of-execution-and-replacement in an agile fashion and flexibility to retain customization as desired.
Likewise, modernizing the system architecture will require banks to adopt the cloud docker container service at scale so the conventional architectural layers – OS, database, application, presentation – and their notional functionalities do not stymie an agile and digital way of working in the future.
Banks recognize security as one of the top risks facing financial services. However, they also understand that risk and security are evolving constructs and processes. In 2020, they will strive to design and implement an adaptive security architecture that anticipates and mitigates the evolving cyber threats without compromising the convenience of the end-user or the customer.
Finally, an extremely crucial part of technology modernization for the customer-first digital age will be about going mobile-first in all a bank does, thinking cloud-first for operational efficiencies and time-to-market gains, and being API-first for effective ecosystem collaboration with partner banks and cross-industry participants.
What are the strategies that banks could use in this behemoth transformation? What are the security constraints and considerations of such a journey? Read about it in the Infosys-Efma retail banking report on Technology Modernization in 2020.
This piece gives you a glimpse into one of the 10 trends that I believe will reshape banking in 2020. Click here to read our full report “Scale Digital: 10 Trends Reshaping Banking in 2020”.