Unlike other industries, the UK’s financial services sector overall has responded well to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, though discrepancies remain. As we step into a largely uncertain future, there seems a silver lining of recovery and reinforcement on the horizon.
What is for sure is that from here on, the financial services industry is going to operate in a changing world. A new stress on digital transformation is around the corner, along with the much-needed focus on sustainability, efficiency, and innovation. Financial leaders will have to step beyond conventional markers of success and rethink their strategies in 2022 and beyond.
In this article, we have put together some key insights for the financial services industry, voicing both near-term concerns and long-term opportunities. Read on!
Personal over Personalisation
According to a Gartner study, 80% of B2B sales interactions are set to take place via digital channels by 2025. However, digitalisation alone is not sufficient to drive financial services to success. The missing keyword is humanisation, calling for ideas, products, and solutions that focus on more human interactions.
In many ways, wealth management has emerged as an essential service for the majority, especially in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic which has accelerated market volatility, economic instability, and health endangerment. This basic need, therefore, requires trust from customers and empathy from firms to deliver meaningfully. Businesses and institutions offering financial services must move beyond traditionally exclusive business models and focus more on engagement, intelligence, understanding, and experience.
Emphasis on the Cloud
The exploration of cloud technology has so far been limited and scattered. Key insights clearly show a drastic shift, however, the cloud offers a potential solution for modernising internal systems besides streamlining connections among all stakeholders. Migrating to the cloud brings the significant opportunity of scalability at a time when customers are constantly looking for digital, secure, and resilient financial services.
Innovations in cloud technology, including multi-cloud and hybrid cloud infrastructure, are enabling financial service providers to integrate other breakthrough technologies including mobile, blockchain, artificial intelligence, and so on. Businesses can meet their environmental, social, and governance (ESG) commitments as well.
Room for Hyper Automation
One of the hidden boons of the COVID-19 pandemic has been the steep escalation towards digital transformation across sectors, including financial services. Banks and insurance companies are rapidly digitising their processes, whether internal or external, in a bid to remain relevant, efficient, and sustainable. Automation has been a key focus for this approach.
However, a key trend in 2022 and beyond will be the move from automation to hyper-automation, bringing together the benefits of machine learning, process timing, automation, and API integration. Not only will financial-service providers and institutions be able to steer clear of complex challenges, but also build end-to-end automated platforms for greater engagement, collaboration, speed, and simplicity.
Prioritising Security, Risk, Compliance
It is true that fintech has witnessed dramatic growth in the wake of the pandemic, but the vigour of the industry will continue to be checked by risks and compliance measures in place. In fact, regulators are set to demand greater accountability from these service providers in 2022 and beyond, bringing compliance to the forefront.
Businesses, banks, and service providers, therefore, will have to include compliance as a critical mission for their organisation. At the same time, they cannot compromise with either customer experience or security. The need of the hour is to be able to deliver secure, risk-free, and compliant ecosystems to keep financial crime in check, while still meeting customer expectations of a quick and hassle-free experience.
The Year of Sustainable Finance
It wouldn’t be wrong to lend 2022 the title of the Year of Sustainability, as communities try retracing their steps to environmental and social balance in every sphere. The COVID-19 pandemic, after all, has exposed the need for a sustainable approach to business operations. With Europe leading the way in terms of sustainable finance regulations, it is clear that the finance industry needs to focus on aspects of green loans and mortgages, carbon-tracking, sustainable products, and innovative offerings.
The War for Talent Ensues
Despite a road to recovery in place, the drop in growth that the fintech industry, along with other sectors, has witnessed in the past few years calls for greater spending by industry players on human capital. The workforce in financial services also needs to be equipped and upskilled on lines with the tech revolution for the industry to make the most of current opportunities. Therefore, 2022 seems all set to be a great year for the fintech talent pool – that’s where Fintelligent comes in!
Fintelligent’s specialist Financial Services division delivers cost-effective recruitment solutions to Financial Services companies. We connect you with candidates whom you can be confident in and rely on for delivering unparalleled performance. Speak to our team to get started.