Continuing our sector-focused exploration of the 'topic-of-the-moment', digital transformation, we now move from addressing developments in the public sector to corporate. Here, in particular, COMPAREX looks to the financial sector's concern surrounding the delivery of on-demand banking services to meet their customer's requirements, whilst simultaneously ensuring the necessity of data security.


Financial institutions have traditionally been reluctant to adopt new approaches. However, over the last five years, banks have become frantically engaged in digital transformation initiatives. Firstly, in an effort to meet the challenge of emerging 'Fintechs', and secondly to meet the demands of a generation of consumers who require instant and constantly available digital services.

The Royal Bank of Scotland’s decision to close 158 branches this year speaks volumes about the need for traditional banks to undertake transformation initiatives. It also highlights the stark reality of the situation facing high-street banks – its customers are going digital, and they must follow suit.

The challenge at hand

Banks have scores of systems providing current accounts, savings accounts, mortgages, loans and more. At the same time, there is an increasing number of customer touchpoints (apps, websites, call centres, etc.), so achieving a single view of the customer is becoming more and more complicated.

Similarly, providing the bespoke, relevant and timely experiences that 'digitally native' customers now expect has become even more challenging. Legacy systems that once were the backbone of banking IT infrastructure are hugely expensive to maintain, often sucking up a large amount of the IT budget and leaving limited funds for digital-first initiatives.

Staying up to speed

The digital environment has created new concerns around security, and there is a need for more robust controls. In an age of increasing identity and cyber-fraud, banks must deliver security that protects customers and their digital identities.

While banking IT leaders have been responding to market and technology pressures by modernising legacy applications and upgrading infrastructure, they are continuing to feel the strain. Many financial institutions have found VMware’s virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) a cost-effective approach to this challenge – employing it to enhance business continuity, security, and on-device capabilities.

Digital transformation means banks must change their outlook and put added emphasis on becoming more data-centric. This will be the key to understanding the new customer-brand dynamic; where there are fewer intermediaries and an increasing reliability on digital-by-design services. Banks should take heed of this approach, as their peers in Fintech have already done so incredibly effectively – spearheading the use of mobile banking services, blockchain, AI, big data and peer-to-peer business models, with enormous success.

Digital disruption is forcing banks and financial service institutions toward new ways of delivering data and apps to customers and employees. Many financial institutions are turning to the secure digital workspace as a solution. VMware's secure digital workspace enables them to adapt to always-on consumers, empower employees with secure mobility, and transform their financial services products and services.

    Forward-thinking finance

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