“The future is now” – a phrase often bandied about by technologists – has never resonated more. According to McKinsey, the Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated digital transformation by as much as seven years.
This speaks to an unprecedented acceleration of ‘digital first’ initiatives among enterprises, with higher levels of investment in digital infrastructure and innovative solutions tailored to future-proofing service offerings, Mark Kenny, client director for banking and financial services, Expleo said.
Obviously, going ‘all in’ on digital transformation makes sense from a competitive standpoint, but more and more business and IT decision-makers now consider inaction on this front as a legitimate threat for their business. In fact, without digital transformation, 65 per cent of financial services leaders said their company won’t be able to survive in ten years: 26 per cent said they won’t last five years.
Spotlight on financial services
These findings, highlighted in Expleo’s Spotlight on Financial Services report, capture the sense of urgency when it comes to expediting digital transformation initiatives at the enterprise level.
The report also highlights how business and IT decision-makers across the financial services sector in Ireland are gearing up for post-pandemic success. It provides a bird’s eye view of the prevailing sentiments of financial services leaders around current trends across automation, artificial intelligence and machine learning, while also assessing changes to the workplace landscape, environmental concerns and evolving consumer demands.
It’s important to note that the business landscape is evolving rapidly, and other external variables are colouring the digital strategies of key decision-makers more than ever.
Recent high-profile ransomware attacks have shone a spotlight on the growing risks from a data security standpoint. While the drive to mitigate data security risks is a cross-sectoral concern, the financial services sector seems to be stealing a march on this front. And with good cause too. Global indicators show the average cost of a data breach in the financial services sector can reach almost €5 million compared to under €3 million for other sectors.
Given the high stakes, it’s encouraging to see financial services leaders thriving under pressure. Today, there is a genuine sense that company boards will take a proactive approach to digital transformation. In fact, 64 per cent of financial services respondents noted how their company’s board is now more likely to approve new IT strategies and innovations due to the pandemic.
While boardroom bravery is critical for long-term growth, strategy reformulation is key for the here and now. Financial services leaders seem to agree – with 51 per cent of respondents acknowledging that their companies are automating more processes as a result of the pandemic, and 57 per cent recognising an acceleration in their companies’ digital transformation efforts.
So, what does this innovation look like from a financial services perspective? Think effortless mobile banking apps, easy to navigate digital wallets, frictionless account opening capabilities and seamless digital onboarding. These are the new strands of focus for digitally equipped financial services operators. These strides forward, coupled with the proliferation of contactless payment options illustrate how far we’ve come in the blink of an eye.
To continue down this path of informed decision-making within the financial services sector, the deep technological acumen and expertise of CIOs and CTOs should define the direction of boardroom discussions, ensuring a ‘digital first’ approach endures over siloed thinking – helping the financial services sector embark on a pulsating period of tech-led innovation and growth.
First-hand insights and actions
To make sure you don’t get left behind, explore first-hand actionable, and timely insights to inform your company’s growth strategy, with Expleo’s Spotlight on Financial Services report.
To download the report, visit: expleogroup.com/fs-spotlight