Past, Present, and Future: The Technology Landscape in FSI
Ever get to the checkout counter to pay at a restaurant or clothing shop and realize you forgot your wallet? The one with your money and ATM card inside? It’s a frustrating experience, for sure, and in times past there was only one solution: go home to fetch your wallet and return to the checkout counter with apologies to the cashier and a commitment to never leave home without your wallet again.
Thankfully, that scenario is quickly becoming the old way of doing things, and, with new technology, many businesses give you the option of making your purchases with mobile pay. Simply link a debit card to your smartphone and rest easy, even if you leave your wallet at home.
Digital disruption in FSI
Digital technologies are disrupting the way people work in nearly every industry in Europe, and, according to Adobe’s latest IDG report, the financial services industry (FSI) is experiencing this disruption more than most. In the past, FSI professionals were used to working with stacks and stacks of paper documents, large filing cabinets, and complex organizational systems. With evolving digital technology, however, key workflow processes are now simpler, faster, and more efficient, and the focus on creating an enjoyable customer experience — which often means removing the inconvenience of face-to-face interactions — has never been more important.
To keep up with the ever-evolving digital landscape, some banks and other financial institutions have left paper documents behind and made the shift to digital platforms. Digital spreadsheets have replaced calculators and accounts books, and instead of storing documents in bulky filing cabinets, many FSI professionals are turning to advanced cloud systems for keeping digital files organized and secure without taking up physical office space.
The mounting competition
Interestingly, however, a number of FSI companies have yet to embrace the digital revolution. In fact, according to the IDG report, only 9 percent of FSI respondents agreed with the statement “We are a digital-first organization,” and only 37 percent committed a budget toward digital transformation in 2017.
The IDG report suggests that going digital will be vital for FSI businesses moving forward if they don’t want to get left behind. The competition is fierce, and will only continue to grow. As digital-only banks such as Monzo shape and elevate customer expectations, FSI institutions need to embrace the liberating potential of today’s workplace technology.
For example, 80 percent of business processes in the FSI sector still rely on paper documents, but these processes could be made much quicker with a digital platform such as Adobe Document Cloud, which includes Adobe Sign, Adobe Scan, and Adobe Acrobat.
Imagine sending a document for a client to sign by email and getting it back with a digital signature the same day. Digital signatures and workflows make what used to be a three-week process a three-hour task. In fact, signatures are processed 21 times faster, and ROI is 383 percent.
A focus on customer experience
Accelerating contractual processes with digital signatures also enhances the customer journey, which should be a major focus of any business today. This isn’t surprising when you consider that Goldsmiths, University of London, found that 50 percent of consumers would buy from an unknown brand if it offered a strong consumer experience, and eight out of 10 consumers stay loyal to brands that offer delightful experiences.
It’s not just the customers that benefit from digital technology in the FSI workplace. With advanced document systems, teams can collaborate on documents in real time while working remotely. Augmented reality is also promising exciting opportunities for workplace collaboration. Imagine being a banking executive and having the technology at your fingertips to visualize the outcome of a particular investment.
The FSI landscape is changing, and technology is driving that change. You may have forgotten your wallet at home, but your company doesn’t have to be left behind.