Just a few years back, it was hard to imagine a bank going paperless and branchless. It was almost fictional to think of money transfer being done instantaneously–whether within a city or across borders. It was magical to conjure up the image of a loan that can be availed with just a few clicks and minimal documentation. Yet, all these are part of the new banking, financial services, and insurance (BFSI) sector impacted by FinTech today. In a short period, the BFSI sector has embraced so many technology shifts. Today the sector has changed so much with the adoption of,
- Core banking technologies
- Decentralized systems
- Alternative and instant KYC mediums
- Chatbots for customer service
- Intelligent processes
- Automated functions
- Smart contract-based banking offerings and systems
- Personalized products
- Customer-life-cycle technologies
- Robo-advisory tools
- Hyper-personalization technologies
- Biometrics Identity Management
- RPA–Robotic Process Automation and
- Machine Learning and Natural Language Processing.
The tech impact on the BFSI sector
FinTech has redefined the industry beyond recognition. It has wiped away long queues, manual exhaustion, bureaucratic fatigue, and process-delays. FinTech has leveraged Artificial Intelligence (AI), Blockchain, and Cloud in such a pervasive and swift way that it has cut costs and created new revenues.
As per the PwC Global FinTech Report 2019, 48 percent of Financial Services organizations have embedded FinTech fully into their strategic operating model, while 37 percent of Financial Services organizations have incorporated emerging technologies into the products and services they sell. These developments raise a few questions.
- Where does this change leave the senior Finance professionals, though?
- What about all the skills and knowledge they have amassed and polished in all these decades before FinTech shook the sector?
- Should they be looking for new roles?
- Should they switch to another industry where legacy skills may still be relevant?
- Should they be planning early retirements already?
For them, this is the right time to get a little braver and smarter to deal with the current predicament. It’s both possible and imperative to evolve their kit of competencies considering the new world order. They can add to and augment their Banking and Finance expertise by learning the new tools that AI, automation, and Cloud present. To add to that, if you are already in a C-Suite position, it is even more critical to gain the right FinTech chops so you can help your organization stay relevant and robust in the unfamiliar landscape. At this point, it is interesting to note,
- Multinational and large corporations are more likely to have a C-suite executive responsible (42 percent), while the number stands at only 29 percent at middle-market companies.
- Organizations with revenues of USD 5bn-plus are significantly more likely to have a C-suite executive responsible (44 percent). For those with revenues of less than USD 1bn, it is 31 percent.
As a senior Finance professional, getting up to speed on the new reality is crucial.
Learn, adapt and grow
To upgrade themselves with newer capabilities and stay relevant, senior Finance professionals can tap into some well-crafted FinTech courses available at many good institutes today. Some of these courses are designed with a lot of flexibility and ease to take them online in an interactive and engaging environment, coupled with rich networking opportunities with industry experts and peers.
Once armed with the FinTech expertise they lack now, these senior Finance professionals can leap forth with so many advantages hard to catch up to for even the sharpest FinTech natives today. The geeks’ technology know-how can be exponentially empowered with senior finance professionals’ rare and hard-earned expertise. It opens up so many avenues in strategic, operational, and management roles that the new breed of FinTech companies want to fill as soon as possible.
There is a shortage of senior expertise at even the most future-forward FinTech company. It has been observed that 75 percent of Financial organizations are creating jobs related to Fintech, but 42 percent struggle to fill the roles. In the PwC 22ND Annual Global CEO survey, one finds that if ten years ago, only about 50 percent of Financial Services leaders saw skills shortages as a threat to their growth prospects, the number has risen to a staggering 80 percent today. It is going to worsen as disruption gets deep and wide.
Convert turbulence into velocity
As much as two-thirds of Financial Services organizations are concerned about the availability of FinTech skills among their senior leadership team and across the sector as well. The situation is full of both concerns and opportunities–as you can surmise reasonably.
This is the right time to learn the new language that the FinTech tribe speaks in. Once that’s in place, you can bank on your rich métier with new confidence and power. With all that experience under your belt, your learning curve would be very short.