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Banking and Wealth Management have always been – and still are – crucial pillars of the whole of the financial services industry, evolving hand in hand with international economic growth and wealth.

With Covid-19 dominating the global narrative, players of the financial services industry have learnt to look at the positives. After all, the pandemic helped to prove the combination of agility and innovation can effectively be a game changer. The speed at which financial services industry transformed to meet their clients throughout the pandemic seems to be the speed at which it aims to continue operating. This requires a culture of proactive change that is typical of a technology-forward institution.

Pushing AI at the heart 

Up until recently the banking industry has benefited from well-established business models. The real differentiator was the so-called “efficacy factor”: if it works properly, then it is fine to stick to it.

However, in the past months of the pandemic, all industries were put to the very test that goes under the name of — sudden – digitalisation. Notably, there has been a dramatic increase in the adoption of online and mobile banking channels across countries.

The rise of digital ecosystems transformed the way customers evaluate services and what they expect from service providers, particularly when surrounded by companies continuously raising the bar on personalisation, anticipating customers’ needs before the customer is aware of them and offering highly-tailored services exactly when they need it and though the rightest channel.

Apparently, we are currently migrating towards a holistically-AI-powered digital era, rethinking how to participate in the digital landscape.

It’s not all market trends though. Indeed, AI technology can successfully improve banks’ capabilities in the long-run and achieve the following key results:

  • Boosting revenues via highly personalised services provided to customers.
  • Lowering costs through efficiencies generated by higher automation, reduced error rates and better resource utilisation.
  • Uncovering new opportunities based on an improved agility of processes.
  • Generating insights from a wide collection of data

In other words, the ideally AI-first bank will offer services and experience that are hyper-personalised and truly omnichannel.

What does the future hold? 

Digital transformation will not halt overnight, and as it shapes the future of industries worldwide, it will be gradually blurring traditional boundaries in financial services. Nowadays, clients tend to view banking and wealth management as two halves of the same experience or rather two constituent factors of the same financial ecosystem. Looking ahead, they will expect to get all their financial needs met in one place.

As Gartner says, financial services institutions understand that existing client-facing technologies are not meeting client expectations or supporting digital transformation. Bank CIOs must determine whether or not wealth capabilities are supported by their current Core Banking System and align with LOB (line of business) requirements (Gartner, 2020 Banker’s Guide to Advisor-Supporting Wealth Management Capabilities in Core Banking Systems).

European Wealth, Asset Managers & Banks are accelerating their digital transformation initiatives to offer increasingly personalised, seamless journeys across all banking channels and within partner ecosystems; to forge stronger, deeper customer relationships, achieve higher levels of growth and profitability, and deliver superior client/user experiences.

To remain competitive, a consistent user experience must arise from fully-integrated service, leading from the front-end to the Core Banking System where the processing takes place. These end-to-end processes are only viable with a seamless connection from the front-end to the cloud-ready Core Banking Platform based on an open architecture.

From banks to wealth and asset managers to fintech, 2021 and beyond are likely to be years of profound transformation to find new ways of working together to create a safer, more inclusive and equitable financial market.