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How fintech is revamping the financial landscape amid Covid-19 outbreak

How fintech is revamping the financial landscape amid Covid-19 outbreak

Technology and digitisation of businesses is no longer ‘nice to have’, but is a necessity in a business capacity as well as for personal banking and trading

The Covid-19 outbreak has presented many logistical challenges for financial services firms looking to operate their businesses with employees working from home, and a distinguishing line is now being drawn between companies which have digitised their business and those who are languishing with outdated methods and technologies.

A classic case of the haves and the have nots for modern times.

Never before has fintech been so critical to operational business and now the need for tech in banks and other financial services organisations is being exposed.

But what about any banks or financial services organisations that have not fully digitised their operations? If their core banking system is not linked to a CRM, it will be much more difficult to take the operations remotely. It is likely that staff members will need to access a number of different systems to service clients, which will add complexity if it is even possible at all.

This should be a real concern for banks and financial services because the Covid-19 crisis will no doubt be a transformative period across the world.

If organisations are not able to satisfy the needs of their customers, people will start looking for alternatives. A lot of financial services is based on trust and traditional banks may find it difficult to “win back” any lost customers after the peak of the crisis passes.

Alongside business functionality, another big development during this period is the rush to communication services, such as Skype for Business, Microsoft Teams and Zoom. While each of these tools have been in use for some time, they are now being utilised to greater effect. Video communication tools are especially useful in cutting costs of inter-office travel.

The Covid-19 lockdown is clearly pushing us further down the fintech, digital road, but will we ever go back?

Will business travel be impacted as companies realise a lot of meetings can be successfully undertaken via video technology? The reason we are asking those questions is because of technology.

Technology makes all of this possible.

In the past weeks we have seen a big surge in our business as investors look to access the financial markets and trade the volatility surge we are observing.

The violent swings in the markets means the traditional methods of wealth management are exposed. Traders are looking for fast, nimble systems for investing that offer them control and transparency.

These types of events are only adding to the trend to move to a completely online financial services industry. The industry was heading that way anyway, but the global shutdown has accelerated the progress and enforced the need for digital business and management tools.

It’s very clear that many people are missing human interaction during the isolation period and thus it’s not likely that everyone is going to be working from home in the future. There are still many benefits of face-to-face meetings. But this crisis has proven that not only do we have the technology to make it possible to work remotely en masse, but that businesses can continue to operate effectively and efficiently even if employees are not based in the office.

A more likely evolution is that we will see a hybrid solution for the workplace of the future which is a mix of efficient, uninterrupted remote working, and traditional office work. The benefits of such a model are now obvious. People can come together at times and at other times they can work remotely. As well as introducing a new level of flexibility to working, this will save companies on overheads. We are all able to appreciate more the importance of human interaction and of socialisation, but similarly the power of technology has never prevailed in such a dominant fashion.

This must surely be the final push everyone in the financial services industry needs to realise that tech is an unavoidable and standard requirement now.

Technology and digitisation of business is no longer something nice to have, but is a necessity both in a business capacity as well as for personal banking and trading.

Those companies that continue to resist the transition to digital and continue to rely on traditional, slow and inflexible old methodologies and practices for managing clients’ wealth and assets need to watch out.

People want fast, nimble, global and affordable solutions that give them control and transparency over their wealth.

The future is not digital anymore, the present is digital and we are never going back.

Nicholas Wright is the sales director, MENA Region at Saxo Bank

 

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