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Transforming the finance sector: 7 ways the cloud can help

Posted by David Smetana on March 27, 2020
Multiple laptops on a desk

The financial services industry has historically been a little risk-averse. But things are changing. A cloud revolution is brewing in the finance sector, with the number of cloud computing adopters rising.  

Why? 

Because the cloud offers a way out of outdated and antiquated infrastructure, as well as stagnant processes. Instead, the cloud empowers firms to work in a modern, responsive and
collaborative way.

As technology and innovation moves forward, so do the demands for more effective ways of working. Slow-moving financial institutions that fail to meet these new expectations run the risk of losing business to cloud-adopting competitors. 

So, how exactly can the cloud help your financial business? 

1. Unparalleled security in the financial sector

We naturally fear the unknown – and that logic applies to cloud computing. As financial services move their data to the cloud, maintaining its integrity and security is critical.

In fact, more than 60 percent of financial services respondents said security is the main factor driving cloud deployment decisions. 

Many financial organisations become disillusioned between control and security when it comes to cloud computing. They're guilty of thinking that offsite data stored on third-party servers gives them less control. However, control does not lead to security – and data stored on-premise servers does not guarantee its protection.

When it comes to cloud security, providers offer the utmost protection for the finance sector, including: 

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2. Automate, not replace 

There seems to be much trepidation in finance surrounding the word ‘automation’. The paranoia seems to stem from the fact that there are concerns about automation replacing employees, when the reality is that automation works to assist, not replace.

In fact, surveys show that there's a significant difference between companies that deploy automated processes and those who don't. Top performing businesses automated 72 percent of configuration management processes, while lower performing companies spent almost 50 percent of their time on manual configuration.

Cloud automation offers an opportunity for the finance sector to eliminate manual and labour-intensive processes, such as underwriting and determining insurance decisions. That being said, business automation requires a prescriptive approach, rather than a ‘one size fits all’ method.

3. Cost efficient, time efficient and scalable 

The cloud's pay-per-use model makes it extremely cost efficient, not to mention accessible for financial organisations.

The flexible nature of the cloud eliminates the risk of wasted spend or over-provisioning, all the while giving you the ability to scale resources as you see fit.

By migrating to the cloud, financial businesses will not only reap the benefits of cost saving; they will also find themselves not having to waste time setting up and implementing these solutions. These resources can be deployed in a matter of hours, rather than the traditional time period of ‘days or weeks’ with conventional processes.

4. Impressive innovation

The cloud enables businesses to achieve an increased pace of product or service development. And, for financial firms, this ability to develop quickly is a crucial part of remaining competitive. 

Advanced analytics, big data and machine learning capabilities means that the finance sector can become far more data driven in their approach, provide more opportunities to improve customer experience, re-allocate internal resources and be more responsive.

From developing finance apps, to automating loan decisions, there are a wealth of innovative cloud-based opportunities waiting to be implemented in the finance sector. 

5. Better collaboration

With modern working needs changing, financial services companies are under pressure to scrap their outdated processes and modernise.

Today’s landscape sees businesses exploring new workplace trends, such as remote working and global expansion. What's more, for the finance sectors, mergers and acquisitions are a common occurrence that should be supported with the right technology and suite of tools.

More than ever – collaboration and communication are business critical. Without a modern workplace, your employees will fail to communicate easily and your client retention may slip. 

6. Greater file and folder organisation

Organisation of files and folders can become less of a priority when your infrastructure is outdated. Uploading files becomes a lengthy and frustrating process, and individuals become so concerned with getting the files uploaded, the matter of ‘right place’ becomes a distant memory.

A modern cloud environment is not only intelligent and intuitive, it has the potential to use machine learning to simplify your organisation processes. By anticipating your next move and highlighting recently used or (easily) uploaded documents, the system can offer a number of ways for these documents to be shared efficiently both internally and externally.

Streamlining this process is particularly beneficial to businesses in finance completing projects, operating across multiple markets, targeting different markets and time zones. 

7. Improved accessibility and productivity

Many email providers are unable to handle files that are larger than a few MB. Unfortunately, when sharing multiple client documents each day, this simply won't do.  

Creating a central hub that all employees can access, rather than waiting for documents to be shared with them, naturally enhances collaboration. Storing these large files on a cloud-based portal will help keep your financial business and employees productive.

championing a strong finance sector

Old dogs can learn new tricks. Although the finance sector may have once stayed true to its legacy infrastructure, times are changing. 

From improved organisation, to better collaboration and innovation, the cloud can help your financial business transform for the better. Ultimately, moving to the cloud will help to improve your competitiveness and help you satisfy your clients in better, bolder ways. 

Want to find out more? Why not contact a member of our team today? 

[Editor's note: This blog has been edited as of February 2020 to offer more insightful content.] 

CTA for financial services market report 2020