Product Innovation Trends

Financial Services: For IT, It’s All About Transparency, Technology

Michael Brigham | May 15, 2014

The productization of IT—coupled with the proliferation of mobile, cloud and social programs—has put more and more power in the hands of the customer. The financial sector is proving to be no exception. As CTOs and CIOs in Financial Services juggle these demands, in conjunction with a mountain of new regulation, they find themselves challenged to prioritize initiatives and manage resources.

Since 2008, the rules governing the financial sector have piled up, and IT teams have played a lead role driving projects to maintain compliance. The latest, the Dodd Frank Act, demands a new level of transparency from financial institutions, requiring them to keep more data for longer and make material changes to their operations. For example, what a financial advisor says publicly on Twitter and Facebook must now be monitored – if not completely blocked – and all electronic communication archived. The simple solution would be to avoid these channels altogether, right? However, in today’s confluence of consumer and professional lives, customers expect to engage meaningfully with service providers via their regular channels, social included. To remain competitive, it’s not an option to disregard conversations going on there.

Merely engaging customers in these channels is not enough; customers require best-in-class, innovative experiences across multiple complex channels and devices. The expected pace of innovation in these platforms has transformed IT from an operations-centric support network to a strategic business partner. IT must move swiftly, in sync with PMO partners through the project lifecycle, to address this increasingly demanding and complex market.

To respond to these challenges, Tier 1 banks, exchanges, asset managers and broker dealers are all investing significantly in technology initiatives, reviewing internal processes and deciding whether to build, buy or outsource the applications and systems they require to keep up with regulators, their competition and the consumer.

Whether IT develops experiences in-house or not, the risks associated with building, implementing and maintaining these applications are many and closely tied to the core businesses they support. With the speed at which the market moves, system failures and interruptions in trading can result in not just poor customer experiences, but also in the loss of millions of dollars in just a few seconds.

To quickly deliver applications that are on budget and aligned with business, industry leaders are investing in tools that better connect their people and their data. These differ from the consumer-facing social networking tools in that they keep teams in sync on complicated projects in the context of the work itself. In today’s complex organizations and globally distributed teams, word documents, e-mails and conference calls no longer fit the bill. Project leaders in Financial Services require an alternative to these methods to stay on top of change, monitor progress and innovate to be winners in their sector.

At Jama, we call this alternative Modern Product Delivery. In the MPD process, numerous teams across sophisticated organizations stay in sync throughout the entire lifecycle, from concept to launch, to combat the complexity inherent in today’s business climate and deliver compliant innovation faster. Read more about Modern Product Delivery and how it can help you get the edge.