Digitisation at the helm of banking ‘reinvention’

Globe with lines leading to all kinds of technology pinpointed on locations

As the COVID-19 pandemic accentuated the need for financial services to adapt to the digital evolution of the customer the industry has found it hard to keep up, according to Pranav Seth, Chief Digital Officer at Techcombank.

Seth told attendees at FST Media’s first foray into Singapore in three years, the Future of Financial Services, ASEAN event last week, that the traditional manner of providing financial services had been rendered obsolete as urbanisation, commerce and digitisation rapidly increased.

He said the pandemic had brought to the forefront the industry’s customer problems that had previously gone undetected or were overlooked, and digitisation could do less to boost hype around new technologies and more to contribute to the real purpose of banking.

He also said the financial services sector had not fully tapped into the “hunt for growth” or taken advantage of its “history of using technology as a co-strategic advantage”, but Techcombank was attempting to commence a ‘reinvention’ of banking.

“We rephrased our vision statement to ‘Change banking, change lives’ because we believe that when banking services are properly provided, this will unlock the growth potential of Vietnam,” Seth said at the conference in Singapore.

“We believe that the bankers of tomorrow need to understand digital: digital operating models, business models and technologies. They need to be good at leveraging data and they need to be able to attract and retain a different kind of talent.

“The biggest challenge that banks face is the silos… it’s about taking the best people from the business, attracting people from across the globe, and putting them all together in a business unit that is driving the tools for both retail and corporate together.

“It’s not just product owners, technology and designers. It’s about bringing marketers, the legal folks, the operations people and risk people all together into one not just to deliver projects, but to deliver business value.”

Fellow panellist at the event, Luke Boatman, Director of Strategic Solutions APJ at New Relic, agreed that the pandemic forced a rapid digital evolution for financial services processes.

“There was a level of convenience in terms of the way we digitally engaged pre-COVID – it was one of many options to engage with financial services institutions,” he told event attendees.

“But when the pandemic kicked off, it became the only way to engage and measure customer sentiment and measure net promoter score.”