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Recommended reading: Digital Banking trends in 2015

02/05/2015 11:30

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We start off a year in which everyone has naturally made their predictions of what's up ahead. These reading recommendations look particularly at the forecasts of the trends that are forecast to impact the immediate future of digital banking. Most share several of the same recurring themes: cloud, analytics, investment in banking as a service, Big Data, incubators and fintech. Would you like to know more about the experts' ideas for reinvigorating the banking sector?


We begin with Chris Skinner and his "Four big bank tech trends for 2015", published for NextBank. Among the key points, we highlight the idea of maintaining the most competitive services in a private cloud and the least differential services in a public or hybrid cloud. Skinner flags up the use of Big Data and its analysis in order to customize and better segment the communications and products aimed at the customer. And he concludes with the importance of sponsoring competitions and incubators as places to find the best fintech projects to integrate.  


Others simplify and further refine their focus, as in the post by Andy Hirst on SAP: 10 trends in Data and Analytics. It looks like everything's heading that way, and a bank that succeeds in digitizing all the information it has on its customers has an ace up its sleeve, although it may later come up against the problem –as yet unresolved– of the legal limits to using these data. Apart from the cloud, security, the need to simplify processes... the key points include the incorporation of the figure of the data scientist in the bank, the need to offer visually attractive and comprehensive formats for all the employees –and why not for customers?– and the importance of monitoring comments on social networks as a means to enrich the data on your products and enable you to compete, knowing what it is the customer wants and is looking for. If the customer is a party to the creation of a product, their involvement will be even greater. At least this is the view expressed by the data scientist D.J. Patil in a recent masterclass. "Data-derived products must be humanized, and the customer must be made to feel that the product improves with his contribution".


We find another interesting article in American Banker, not on trends, but on the threats to banking and how they can be met. One interesting idea is that the banks should come up with specific plans for accounting and strategic planning aimed at small owners in order to obtain greater revenues from fees, and from future loans. It also points to the need for banks to be in constant contact with the fintech entrepreneurial ecosystem, for which it recommends the creation of laboratories or innovation centers. It makes particular mention of non-bancarized individuals, particulary young people, and the importance of financial literacy: help with funding may guarantee a loyal and profitable customer tomorrow. Another key point in this article is the idea of sharing data among banks to fine-tune risk analysis in loans, reinforce the fight against cyber-attacks, and enable closer monitoring of money-laundering activities. 


All this goes to show that BBVA is not simply taking a stab in the dark with its digitization process, as most of the ideas and trends mentioned by these different articles have already been implemented in the bank. It is worth pointing out that the BBVA Innovation Center was set up almost four years ago with the goal of raising awareness of this innovation ecosystem and bringing it all together. What's more, competitions like Open Talent and InnovaChallenge are further proof of the Bank's commitment to maintaining continuous contact with startups in the fintech world and opening up the Bank's data to developers. Another interesting point is BBVA's emphasis on Big Data through BBVA Data & Analytics and the acquisition of Madiva, among a number of other actions aimed at achieving this transformation.


Finally we should mention the infograph highlighted by Deloitte under the title On the move: The outlook for financial services in 2015, which once again singles out the issue of security, in addition to signaling the various sectors in which digital banking will begin to take off in 2015.