BFSI Leaders Highlight the Tech Trinity for Digital Transformation: Cloud Computing, Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence
- High performance computing, data analytics, AI/ML, cloud, etc are emerging as strategic priorities
- Legacy modernization, integration with third party solution provider, data security and compliance are the concerns
The Banking and Financial Services sector has undergone some tectonic shifts in the last two years, which has fundamentally reconfigured the entire ecosystem. With the global disruption enabling players to emerge stronger and resilient, firms are now adopting Digital Transformation and cutting-edge technologies with unprecedented speed.
At the recent edition of “Digital Leaders Club”, curated by CORE Media and powered by Google Cloud India, CIOs from BFSI enterprises and Google Cloud executives, exchanged perspectives and experiences in adopting technology, the challenges and their future plans.
Anoop Mathur, Founder & President, CORE Media, who moderated the discussion opened with a cue for all, “Customer-centricity is on the forefront and companies have the customers at the heart of their digital transformation journey. Pairing strategy with the right technology and technology partner is pivotal for the leaders in the BFSI sector. Whether it’s to support the changing customer & employee needs, data-driven innovation, or highly complex security & compliance requirements, leaders in this sector are reckoning with a number of dynamic elements.
Acknowledging the need for transformation, Anantharaman Balakrishnan, Sales Director – Google Cloud India emphasized “Digital transformation and modernization are key pillars for financial services organizations to reimagine customer relationships and improve operational efficiencies. Enterprises in the banking and finance sector are leveraging advanced technology for increasing revenue, reducing cost, reducing risk and improving operational efficiency.”
Modernization and Cloud
Cloud computing has garnered massive traction in the post-pandemic world. It is a rapidly growing technology that is enabling many disruptive technologies such as big data, artificial intelligence, the internet of things (IoT), and others.
Speaking on the extent of Cloud technology adoption, the IT Head of a public sector general insurance firm said, “Many major applications have now migrated to Cloud and even the regulators are open to accepting cloud platforms. However, getting Multiple Clouds still remains in discussion. Because with multiple-clouds there are few issues like – requirement of a certain scale, the cost aspects, security overheads and whether the overheads are justifiable. We need more information and cases in these areas to understand the benefit and the long-term value generation”
Reliable and accessible cloud-enabled DR as a Service (DRaaS) is gaining momentum in the banking and insurance industry. However, data security and integration come across as a prime concern in a public cloud scenario.
Elaborating on the concerns, the Chief Technology Officer of a housing finance company mentioned “Latency is a major issue when dealing with multiple vendors. Data security is a prime requirement and which is why we are being meticulous at every step of the digital transformation, challenging the status quo from the perspective of the common goal and stakeholder benefit.”
Responding to this concern A. Bala said “Reason why DR as a service becomes crucial as enterprises get onto a public journey could be because as per regulatory mandate, from banking or IRDA or even SEBI perspective, the company needs to have the DR in a separate seismic zone. Google Cloud is the only cloud provider to have presence in separate seismic zones and this makes it easier for organisations to establish a DR in a separate seismic zone. Moreover, Google cloud offers flexibility and compatibility in integration to overcome the operational challenges that come with having different service providers”.
Regarding the security concern that arises while working with multiple technology partners, Rajat Pandit, Head of Google Cloud (Enterprise Business - India) said “Google Cloud does not merely rely on perimeter security framework, it works on a Zero Trust Model that considers parameters like identity, access, authorization, role, application, time etc. to enable complete control and better security”.
Smart Analytics Create Opportunities
As more and more data is being generated, the need for smart data analytics is gaining momentum. Experts mentioned how a lot of time is spent by companies to manage data warehouse systems and this impacts the compute requirement too. Server-less warehouse solutions come as a preferred solution for businesses that helps them optimize cost and create a flexible analytics model.
“Hybrid Cloud model in the way forward for sure. After segregating the kind of analysis that we need, we aim to leverage the hybrid cloud model to achieve maximum efficiency”, said the CIO of a leading Fintech company.
BFSI organisations are now moving to paperless models to interact with customers and capture data. This data encapsulates meaningful insights that can enable channels for revenue generation.
Highlighting the current needs, the CIO shared, “We generate very less unstructured data. Most of our data is well-defined and captured during the customer acquisition process and KYC process. The need is to build smarter customer profiles from that data which can enable intelligent analytics.”
Right from generating awareness, followed by customer acquisition to on-boarding and relationship management, mapping the entire journey of the customer across multiple channels is essential to build an accurate customer profile. BFSI enterprises are seeking smart cloud-based solutions that can enable accurate analytics to meet customer expectations at every step.
Leveraging on AI for enhanced customer experience and service quality
AI technology that initially intended to defeat more manageable issues, is now making innovative headways into more sophisticated solutions and tackling complex issues. From chatbots to fraud detection, customer relationship management to analytics and prediction, AI is now an integral part of the digital transformation process.
Speaking on the role of AI and ML models in the digital transformation, CIO of a leading general insurance company stated “The strategic implementation of AI with machine learning models, majorly for the customer-centric processes, takes the spotlight in the digital transformation journey of the BFSI enterprises. Layer of AI between businesses and customers gives an incremental benefit in understanding customer needs, augment the service experience and most importantly it allows the business to be where the customer is present.” He also emphasized on how chatbots are the future of customer interface and how organisations are customizing chatbots at various customer service levels.
While BFSI enterprises gear up to join the digital transformation race, they seek technological solutions and expert services for their core and non-core business processes. Digital transformation is the way forward and the BFSI sector is slowly but surely getting equipped to be in the forefront of this transformation.