Artificial intelligence, blockchain, and digital invoicing are just some of the finance technologies and innovations that are moving faster than the finance industry can adopt them. Looking back just a few short years ago, it wasn’t unusual that you’d find customers regularly walking into a bank building to manage their finances. Greeted by a manager or teller, banking customers could deposit or transfer funds, borrow money, make a payment, and handle a host of other transactions with an offer of water or candy as they wait. But those days are gone as virtual banking is fast becoming the norm. Finance technologies have creeped into our lives and swiftly changed how we conduct business.
Customers love the convenience and mobility
The convenience of online banking is a positive note in our everyday, busy lives. Who has the time to wait in long lines to take out a loan, open an account, or transfer money? Today, customers eagerly embrace new technologies using their mobile phones as digital wallets to make payments, invest, and borrow money. They can be literally anywhere with a data or Wi-Fi connection to virtually handle these transactions with ease. Quicken Loans’ Rocket Mortgage, for example, can approve your mortgage within minutes while handling all the necessary “paperwork” online.
With convenience comes the bad guys
The user experience undoubtedly drives many of these new finance technologies as today’s customers look for seamless, painless ways to handle their banking and other financial affairs. The use of digitized signatures, notarizations, and other advances make it possible to stay in the comfort of your home to handle most, if not all transactions. Of course, with the convenience comes the bad guys who would like nothing better than to find ways to take your money or your customers’ money. Cyber security is a big problem that the finance industry knows all too well. Looking for solutions to invest in is a top priority.
Priorities in finance innovations
New technologies are making a profound impact and affecting nearly every aspect of the financial world. As emergent finance technologies quickly transform business with artificial intelligence, chatbots, IoT and more, finance companies find themselves scrambling to work through these innovations. A sense of urgency and a wide array of options can cause many financial institutions to wrestle with their own priorities along with important technological advances in the industry. In fact, “…many businesses are concerned they will lose out to the innovators in this sector if they do not embrace these developments.” It makes sense that the financial industry would want to be in the driver’s seat when it comes to changes in any form that affects the way they do business. But that’s a lot of pressure for any business or industry to absorb.
Relevant technologies to invest in
Knowing what the priorities are for your business and what you should invest is becoming increasingly important. In a PwC report, the top five most relevant technologies that finance companies plan to invest in include data analytics (74%), mobile (51%), artificial intelligence (34%), cyber security (32%), and robotics process automation (30%). But with all these advancements in technology, PwC suggests the top two priorities for 2020 is updating your operating systems and simplifying legacy systems. This will help you get ready for the new norm. According to PwC, “You may need different hardware, software, or storage technology. You may also need to rethink the way you network the components.”
Furthermore, since you will be thinking through your next move, you should also consider what makes your organization unique and how software can help fill in the gaps to make you a leader in your business. After all, there really is no magic formula that will solve all your problems or concerns. There are many elements that will need to be integrated to ensure smooth business processes. They need to be flexible enough to also integrate future finance technologies.
Keeping an eye on financial disruptors is important for CFOs with “blockchain, unified ledger integration, AI and digital invoicing” making the biggest marks. So, what’s your game plan moving forward? Think about your own processes and what areas may need improvement. Move away from paper and manual functions to automated processes. Learn more about your own business with data analytics. Explore when your customers do business online and how you can better service them when and where they want. Find where your weak links exist. Then look to technology and software development to customize your offerings to be more competitive and up to speed.
Using technologies to define your business
As finance technologies continue to lead the way, staying on top of the changes is crucial to your success. Recognize that technology isn’t going away but will continue to revolutionize how we conduct finance. As you adopt innovations, make sure not to overlook your own ability to make a difference in your business offerings. Look inward to discover ways to improve your processes, enhance customer engagement, and stay ahead of the competition.