Industry Comment

Omnichannel: the new normal for retail banks

With customers expecting consistent service across all channels, banks must step up to the plate and streamline their processes when it comes to customer interaction. Using the omnichannel approach, they’ll also reap the rewards of better customer intelligence and a clear idea of how best to spend precious budgets.

Bricks or clicks? The choice isn’t yours

The challenging ongoing economic climate and the resulting shrinking markets have created an environment of greatly increased competition. In order to deal with the pressures of recession, retail banks are increasingly being forced into a strategic transformation of business structure, culture and practice. How they interact with customers is a prime focus during these transformations, writes Mike Davies, Regional Vice President Sales EMEA North at GMC Software Technology.

Life beyond legacy: exploring the options

The payment industry has never seen so much change or opportunity. It continues to be reshaped by shifts in the economic landscape, new technologies and customer needs and this is set to continue.

Blog: Will Prepaid Change the Way China Shops? (August 2013)

By Shoney Yuan, Ceridian Stored Value Solutions (SVS) Take a stroll down any street in one of China’s big cities and it’s hard not to feel excited about the business potential this vast nation offers. Sophisticated marketing and innovative advertising compete for your attention as a consumer. There is much to buy—from groceries, to household […]

Regulation: a torrent of trouble for wealth management

Regulation is a key driver of change on IT strategies across the wealth management sector, and brings huge challenges, especially for smaller players: predictions are that the cost of compliance may rise by a further 16% by 2015.

Evolution of Payments

One common thread unites developed and emerging economies across the globe – the ubiquity of mobile devices are changing the way people interact with businesses and each other. In many countries, the number of mobile phones in use surpasses the number of consumer bank accounts. This shift in consumer behaviour is changing the face of payments as we know it.

Demystifying m-commerce

Payments made via mobile devices are fast becoming de rigueur as tablet sales are expected to overtake personal computers by 2017. Shane Fitzpatrick  addresses five common myths about m-commerce and how to capture online revenues. Smartphones are already more popular globally than desktop PCs and of the 1.875 billion phones to be sold in 2013, […]

Viewpoint: 7 European Markets and Their Shifting Prepaid Opportunities (Spring 2013)

An Edgar, Dunn & Company study compares the existing state and prospects for corporate and government prepaid programs in Europe in 2010 and 2013. We assessed seven European countries— France, Italy, Germany, the U.K., Spain, Poland and Turkey—and rated the attractiveness of each market, based on the legal and regulatory environment and prepaid market receptiveness, against the prepaid market opportunity.

How to achieve customer-centricity

Why are banks and insurers struggling to operate as true customer-centric organisations when they know great customer service is a crucial differentiator? The answer lies in the enterprise operating model, which can create a structural barrier to achieving customer-centricity, writes Sean Tomlinson. head of consulting, private sector, Steria (right). The problem with the enterprise operating […]

Strengthening financial visibility for improved risk management

New research shows that large businesses are continuing to identify risk management and corporate governance as pressing financial priorities. To achieve true visibility into these areas, corporate treasurers need detailed insight and accurate forecasting capabilities.

EMV – driving the global eradication of card fraud

Authentication, risk management, transaction integrity and cardholder verification, are the four features that define the EMV standard, specified by EMVCo, the organisation that manages the EMV standards and associated compliance processes. These are designed to protect merchants, acquirers and cardholders from fraudulent transactions. However, closing the loop on fraud altogether will be almost impossible without […]

Viewpoint: A Closer Look at Choosing an HSA Administrator (July 2013)

Employers looking at consumer-directed health care plans with HSAs tend to pick providers based on one or two administrative details, but they really need to dig into what kind of benefit experience employees will get. The quality of that interaction can make all the difference, and yield happy, engaged employees.

Pressing the reset button

Whether or not the coalition government succeeds in implementing all of its proposals remain to be seen but undoubtedly the transformation of the banking sector – across all levels – is most certainly underway …

FATCA-style agreements present taxing times for GRC teams

If your role has anything to do with governance, risk and compliance or with international tax agreements, then you’ll be familiar with the United States Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act and the potential impact on many of the world’s financial institutions …

Four steps for denying DDoS attacks

Financial institutions have been battling waves of large distributed denial of service attacks since early 2012. Many of these attacks have been the work of a group called the Qassam Cyber Fighters, which until recently posted weekly updates on Pastebin about the reasons behind its attacks.

Making contact … eventually

Despite security concerns, contactless payments technology continues to be rolled out globally. Visa International recently estimated that the volumes of contactless transactions it will process during 2013 will quadruple. MasterCard’s figures show that since 2012 there has been a 50% increase in the number of contactless cards it has issued.

Twitter shakes up market: the impact of social media on algos

On 23 April 2013, the markets suffered a brief, sharp drop as algorithms reacted to “news” from the Associated Press’s Twitter handle that President Obama had been injured in a bombing attack at the White House. In a few minutes, the Dow Jones dropped 145 points, Standard & Poor’s 500 Index lost $136 billion in […]

In New York Times, Prepaid Fee Story Misses the Mark (July 2013)

By Patrice Peyret, Banking Up In the July 1 New York Times story “Paid via Card, Workers Feel Sting of Fees,” reporters Jessica Silver-Greenberg and Stephanie Clifford raise an important question but fail to answer it: Are a significant number of employers forcing hourly workers to use expensive payroll cards? The three key conditions here […]

NFC mobile payments: overcoming the barriers for banks

The past few years have seen major changes to the way we make low value payments, from pre-paid wallets such as the Oyster Card through to contactless cards in retail transactions – thanks to Near Field Communication devices.

Reducing threats to availability in the banking sector

The financial services sector’s growing interdependence between internet-accessible clearing and transaction processing infrastructure means that a successful DDoS attack can have far reaching consequences, such as customer dissatisfaction and loss of trust, brand damage, increased operating costs and lost revenue to name just a few.

FATCA, IGAs and AML Technology

After a long wait, the first real FATCA implementation deadlines are just around the corner. To meet the new account identification requirements, by 1 January 2014, institutions should be in the process of implementing the necessary upgrades in their onboarding and overall compliance systems and processes.

Banking on a mobile relationship

The last five years have been tough for the UK banking sector, but optimism is slowly returning, writes Ian Byrne, banking director UK & Ireland at Wincor Nixdorf. Capital reserve ratios are largely being met, the prices of bank stocks are becoming more stable, and there is now even talk of the Government divesting its stake in the banks which it bailed out. Indeed the sector has deserved this boost, but it has got a lot of work to do before it can rekindle the relationship with today’s more technology-adept consumer.

Changing banking for good: aspiration or opportunity?

The possibility of jail for miscreant top bankers has hit the headlines following publication of the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards final report, a compendium of all that is considered wrong with both banks and the regulator …

Blog: Mobile Payments Test Drive: Square Wallet, Starbucks App and Lemon (June 2013)

Mobile wallets get a considerable amount of media attention, but will any of them really drive users to leave the plastic card era behind? I recently did a comparison test of Square Wallet, Lemon and Starbucks’ own mobile app. While all the payment types I used worked surprisingly well, none of them was an experience that elevated shopping into the futuristic world these apps conjure up among payments enthusiasts.

Embrace the internet to determine the future of banking

The impact of the internet on the banking industry may yet turn out to be far more important than the financial crisis and the subsequent regulatory overhaul. Viewing statements on-line and making payments electronically is just the very beginning of the revolution.

ISO 20022 – A Hero for Our Times

ISO 20022 has been hailed as the lingua franca in payments and securities for some years now. It offers great potential for re-engineering the payments industry, and for process improvement, but for a standard that promises so much it is still relatively unknown.