The global financial services industry today has started embracing efficiencies that come with technology disruption; artificial intelligence, robotics, speech and natural language processing are the must-have tools rapidly adopted by the buy- as well as the sell-sides. These assimilations can dramatically impact business flows but through the process of adaptation, they also may compromise a company’s relationship with their clients if the technology adoption hits roadblocks or does not engage proper skills and experiences.

The client onboarding processes, including know-your-client (KYC) validations, anti-money laundering (AML) checks, legal negotiations, account opening, and funding are also transforming


Striking the right balance

The novel onboarding practices are striving to be high-automation and low-touch and the main challenge now is achieving client onboarding efficiencies whilst retaining consumer trust and service satisfaction.  AI adaptations allow for massive onboarding savings benefiting both financial service providers and their clients, however, these technologies require special skills and extensive practice to be implemented correctly. 

Vendor platforms are now geared towards client onboarding for financial services, Pega being a great example, but these also require mature skills and expertise.

It is critical while migrating client-facing workflows to emerging technologies to make sure not to disrupt the client business and maintain continuity and high quality of service.


Is a Massive Cultural Change Imperative?

There is a lingering perception that a financial services organization moving towards advanced technology-based client onboarding must brace itself for a massive cultural change. That should not be the case. Technology adaptation should be in-line with the client and service provider’s needs and provide a high level of service.

Client relationship has been and always will be fundamental to the success of any financial company and the onboarding process changes should not negatively impact that relationship. As the client onboarding process becomes less manual and more automated it also becomes the litmus test for the company’s relationship with its clients.


The Way forward

It is critical for any financial services organization rapidly adopting new technologies to its onboarding workflows to continue fostering a culture of client satisfaction, client sensitivity and exceptional service.  Change in technology onboarding process should benefit the client as well as the financial organization and must result in savings in time and cost to both. That can be achieved with methodical technology implementations on a proven client onboarding platform, using experienced skilled resources and industry-recognized subject matter experts. These are the best practices that will help to transition onboarding practices while preserving the organizational culture.

Ella Flikop

Ella Flikop

Senior Principal, Infosys Consulting

Ella Flikop is responsible for the overall management of the design, development and implementation of business technology solutions for banking and finance clients. She has over 25 years of experience as a solutions architect for capital markets, asset management, and broker/dealers. Ella specializes in automation and re-engineering of quantitative, analytics-intensive business processes, and holds a master’s degree in statistics from Columbia University. 

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