- As the competitor and consumer landscape shifts dramatically in the Irish financial services sector, technology-enabled transformation can help companies enhance their operations, deliver a differentiated customer experience and capture a greater share of the market.
- Placing humans at the centre of any technology transformation will increase the chances of success. We see differing approaches to transformation, each with their own merits and risks. The required experience and technical skills are in short supply.
- The 2022 EY Tech Horizon report identified key technologies to enable business transformation – we examine which of these are most relevant for the financial services sector in Ireland.
A changing business landscape
Over the past five years, we have seen seismic shifts within the financial services sector in Ireland. Characterised by constant change, the industry now faces rising costs, increased competition from new market entrants and sophisticated customer expectations. Added to this is the pressure of an increasingly complex regulatory landscape as well as a severe talent shortage.
Technology has become the primary enabler for business transformation – it can underpin, enable, and catalyse it. The technology platforms used by financial services firms in Ireland have been built over many decades. These platforms must now be transformed, to deliver richer customer experiences, to comply with new regulations and standards, and to reduce the cost-to-serve for the organisation.
Humans at the Centre
Irish financial services firms are complex; layers of structure, process and control can stifle innovation and slow the path to change. To overcome this complexity, business transformation needs to start and end with great people.
Research from EY and the University of Oxford’s said Business School found that:
of senior leaders have been involved in two or more transformations in the past five years
experiencing at least one underperforming transformation during this time.
Creating a shared vision for transformation is essential to engage and excite colleagues. As is the need for an adaptive, inclusive culture that embraces failure and maximises learning.
In addition to colleagues, the voice of the customer needs to be present in every transformation conversation. The organisation’s Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) should be rooted in customer experience. Teams should obsess about their customer. What would improve this customer journey? How can we simplify this service offering? What can we digitalise or innovate to drive a differentiated experience? With this human-centric design approach the chances of great customer outcomes increase significantly.
Findings from our 2022 Tech Horizon Report
Our 2022 Tech Horizon report, published earlier this year, is based on a global survey of 1,668 senior executives on the role of technology in transformation. The findings tells us that only 22% of Irish respondents believed their transformations are exceeding expectations. On the ground, we see Irish financial services companies moving further towards contemporary methods to deliver complex transformations.
The use of project management frameworks such as Agile and Scrum have become commonplace across many geographies. Not just to deliver new digital experiences to customers, but as an approach to incrementally achieve regulatory compliance or to simplify the technology estate. This shift to new methods creates demand for niche experience and technical skills that are in short supply in the market.
Within retail banking, at a technology platform level, we see Irish banks continuing their banking transformations with established industry players, such as Temenos and Finacle. While interest continues to grow in emerging platform providers such as Thought Machine and Mambu. Each of these banking platforms has its own strengths and weaknesses; there is no “best” approach. The selection criteria will depend on the culture, ambition, and capabilities of the individual bank. Again, the voice of the customer needs to be front of mind in choosing the most appropriate solution, as well as the availability of talent to design, build and operate the new platform.
Our report maps out a four-step process to build a data-centric organisation:
- Build your enterprise’s vision of a data-centric future
- Explore use cases – aligning to your corporate strategy
- Map the gap – architect and build the technology foundation
- Obsess about your customer; Collect more data to innovate, learn and address what customers need
Trusted partners in Transformation
Through working with a range of clients in the financial services sector, our Technology Consulting team understands the unique culture and context of Irish financial services firms.
Our teams have extensive experience working across key functions such as Digital, Operations, Finance, Risk and HR to deliver complex technology-enabled transformations.
For each client, we bring together professionals from our local teams in Ireland as well as our global network of technology transformation practitioners; giving you the right people with the right skills to successfully deliver your transformation.
To find out more about how we can help click here.