Significant changes in business and regulatory requirements have created a challenge all organisations face – the need to embrace technology.
Digital Jersey Ambassador Heather-Anne Hubbell shares her thoughts on why companies must embrace digital technology.
Significant changes in business and regulatory requirements have created a challenge all organisations face – the need to embrace technology. Companies must embrace digital adoption to improve existing processes continuously.
1. Efficiency and client satisfaction
Modernising operations through digital adoption helps manage risk and improves efficiency and employee and client satisfaction.
An inability to adapt can lead companies to fall behind, especially when their clients seek innovative ways of working. A lack of trust and understanding of emerging technology is often the most significant barrier to digital adoption. Assessing and adopting new technologies within the governance and regulatory framework provides a holistic approach to digital innovation across organisations. Understanding how new technology works within an existing governance framework gives end users the confidence to adopt it as a valuable and helpful tool.
At Phundex, we’ve spent years helping organisations transform their organisations to improve efficiency and regulatory compliance, encouraging the use of technology to reduce administrative inefficiency and free up time for more value added work. Some consistent points impact how successfully organisations can embrace these changes and encourage adaptability. Thinking about digital adoption as just another technology project is a sure pathway to resistance. Organisations need to think of technology as a tool to streamline and simplify the way work is done and to understand that this is a continuous cycle, not a one-time event. Being open to this ongoing change is key to increased adaptability for the organisation and its internal and external stakeholders. Understanding and encouraging this is fundamental to successful adaptation for modern business. It must be encouraged top-down from the senior management within an organisation and supported throughout the company to be effective.
For financial services businesses, there is the added complexity of regulatory requirements and ensuring compliance with myriad complex issues. A well-defined regulatory and governance framework to assess digital opportunities is key to successful adaptivity. That framework is often overlooked in a rush to buy technology tools to solve specific problems. A more holistic approach to that framework and how technology fits into it will make decisions about using technology more focused.
3. Regulatory compliance
Jersey, one of the world’s leading offshore international financial centres, is focusing on modernisation amongst businesses. The drive to adopt technology is encouraged by international regulatory bodies, including the OECD and Moneval, and echoed by the Jersey regulators. In July 2022, the Jersey Financial Services Commission (JFSC) released a report regarding the use of Regulation Technology (RegTech) on the island. With 78% of firms agreeing that RegTech is necessary for achieving compliance, there is a growing sentiment toward adopting technology to assist businesses in their operational duties. The report also shows that adoption is a long-term goal of organisations, but anecdotal evidence suggests that the delayed adaptability is due to a concern about how the regulator will view technology. Having the regulatory framework noted above will help regulated businesses to clearly understand and explain to regulators how technology will enable them to meet their regulatory requirements.
This, in turn, encourages the adaptability necessary to meet the constantly evolving business requirements faced today by all businesses. Adapting to a hybrid working environment during COVID was the perfect storm that encouraged firms to adopt more technology and different ways of working. Aside from the additional flexibility and enhanced work-life balance for employees, organisations were exposed to the power of technology and its true reliability and potential.
The pandemic served as a silver lining in the shift of mentality towards the need for harnessing digital adoption more than ever. A compelling case for adoption, businesses need to remember how many changes were required during the pandemic and continue encouraging that adaptability in the future.
The development of blockchain-based platforms has given rise to increased transparency using technology. This blockchain technology provides an auditable, valid ledger of transactions that cannot be tampered with. By utilising such technologies aligned with or to replace legacy systems, data access and integrity is enabled.
For example, through digitising authorised signatories, a substantial amount of administrative work is automated, economising time and cost of internal processes. In terms of accessibility, this adoption must also be viewed from an internal perspective, where businesses have begun to utilise cloud computing in place of legacy networks. Hence, employees are able to access data where and when they need it, especially with the embracement of hybrid working environments.
4. Business growth
The myriad of FinTech solutions today can make the choice overwhelming and a focused approach to selection is vital for successful adoption. Businesses need to look at how easy the technology is to implement with existing systems, but also how easily employees can use it. Optimising the time-to-market cycle is a vital aspect for the success of many businesses. It is therefore important for the business to be thoroughly assessed to determine where technology will best enhance the efficiency of this cycle. Automating current manual tasks is pivotal to concentrating, enabling teams to focus on business growth and freeing time for clients.
Phundex is a cloud-based platform which requires no technical integration, allowing rapid deployment and quick adoption. Designed to support the way businesses operate, it is easily customised to meet current and future business requirements without the need to technology teams and software developers. Many organisations today operate on a global basis, with teams scattered around the world.
By shifting from emails and ad hoc tools to technology enabled remote working teams, transparent, effective collaboration and communication are achieved. To face the challenges of today, organisations need to be able to utilise technology to manage the risks of tomorrow. Successful adoption requires selecting tools with minimal technical integration requirements and easy adoption with existing processes without increasing operational risk.
Through an increased reliance on digital technologies to leverage operational management, people skills can be leveraged to enhance the productivity and growth of the business where it really matters. It is no longer a matter of a choice for organisations to embrace digital adoption, as, without it, they will inevitably be unable to keep up with increasing regulation and business requirements, particularly in the financial services industry.
A note on the author
Heather-Anne Hubbell, CEO of Phundex and Digital Jersey Ambassador
Heather-Anne Hubbell has an extensive record of transformation in the risk, regulation and finance areas within Financial Services. In her
various roles as lawyer, banker, risk manager and consultant, she has helped improve transaction and process management, leveraging technology to reduce operational risk, increase regulatory reporting capability and enhance collaboration across teams.
Phundex is a collaboration platform for people, processes, and technology, allowing transactions to close faster and processes to be completed more efficiently. Our centralised process, transaction and data management hub improves efficiency, reduces operational risk and improves communication across stakeholders. We’ve worked in the industry for years, so we designed Phundex to streamline and standardise processes, improve go-to-market time and provide better transparency and disclosure.