" class="no-js "lang="en-US"> Where Will Digitisation In Banking Go In 2022, With Cameron Tickell:
Thursday, June 13, 2024

Where Will Digitisation In Banking Go In 2022, With Cameron Tickell:

Even before the outbreak of the COVID pandemic, more and more firms were exploring the opportunities that embracing a digital-first approach to their products and services could provide. If we fast forward to the present day, it now seems essential to operate in the digital realm. With fintechs and challenger banks seemingly revolutionizing the traditional, and somewhat archaic, system of banking, the question begs to be answered; where will the digitisation in banking reach in 2022? In speaking with Cameron Tickell, VP Ecosystem Strategy at Zafin, a leading cloud-native platform for product and pricing lifecycle management, we were able to find out what the most surprising trends of 2021 were, and what specific aspects of digitisation in banking will and WON’T dominate the sector in 2022.

‘I think what was most surprising in 2021 was the lack of investment into the SME/SMB space across the banking sector.’ – This is interesting, given that this space has come under renewed focus by many financial organisations, however Tickell wonders if traditional banks and credit unions can innovate quickly enough in this space against the new swell of credit scoring engines, account aggregation services and specialised neo-institutions ready to fill the void in the coming years. ‘I had predicted that financial institutions would be laser-focused on small business, considering the copious amounts of government support, structured payments and new credit offerings that resulted from the pandemic.’ Clearly then, to Tickell, this area is one that deserves more focus and more quality than it had received.

What’s in store for 2022? – Tickell believes that a key trend that will emerge is that product packages (such as those that include your Netflix or Spotify subscriptions), subscriptions-based insurance and international transfers will make banking products ‘feel a whole lot more millennial.’ What does this mean? Well, it is clear that themes of embedded finance will continue to dominate the world of payments, and that in turn may change the traditional architecture of banking. ‘There is a general trend toward the platform play within banking architecture. Banks are relinquishing the responsibility of owning the source code, as more and more ‘as-a-service’ propositions are allowing for faster time to market, faster ROI’s and the ability to innovate at speed. These platforms are also partnering and integrating with each other and creating new ecosystems, which allow banks to select from a shopping list the different players to power their technology. Simply put, these platforms and ecosystems can integrate with any subscription-based service, allowing the bank to package it together in their offer to a customer.’ This would no doubt provide a more efficient service for the customer.

The above clearly places importance on collaborations between different organisations to create a successful ecosystem. However, this isn’t always an easy process, as Tickell points out the importance of selecting the right partner, and using data correctly. Data is the new oil; ‘It’s all very well to have a product platform, fraud platform, customer experience platform, CRM and 20+ plug-ins. But the underlying data model and flow must be thought through for it to all work seamlessly together.’

Africa To Takeoff – We work in a space that is so transnational now, and yet certain geographies still retain an idiosyncratic sense about their operations. APAC and India have certainly demonstrated their successes as hubs for producing promising fintech Ventures, but Tickell notes how it could be the continent of Africa to lead the next fintech revolution beyond others this year. ‘They have one of the greatest opportunities to move at the quickest pace, as they’re ‘fast followers’ with less reliance on, and hindrance from, incumbent systems.’ Africa is already renowned for producing some of the most successful fintech ventures the space has ever seen. You only have to turn to the prolific importance that M-Pesa has had. Keep your eyes out for more!

Machine Learning In Banking To Flop In 2022? – A bold, and certainly different, observation for 2022, from Tickell – ‘I know this is going against current investment trends and eventually the tide will turn, but I’ll put my neck out and say it won’t’ be in 2022!’ Tickell believes that there are clear current use cases for machine learning in the banking space, primarily dominated by the likes of fraud, risk profiling and calculation. ‘Banks are also investing heavily into other machine learning practices, although the lack of a single view of a customer due to a multitude of incumbent systems is hindering the real-world implementations in the bigger banks.’ An interesting pick for sure, but more importantly it highlights how progress for the sake of progress isn’t valuable if it doesn’t truly support the needs of the customer.

Finally, on a personal level, I’m hoping to see innovators create new platforms that can provide transparency on, and improvement of, ESG practices across banking and their investment businesses.’ In a world that is increasingly socially conscious and aware of the need to be advanced with sustainability, I share Tickell’s hope here too.

It’s an exciting year for 2022!

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