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‘Financial institutions must maintain competitive edge among peers’

By Benjamin Alade
30 November 2022   |   3:41 am
Financial institutions must maintain a competitive edge and differentiation in a bid to understand customer needs and adapt to market trends while reaching the under-served and the unbanked.

Country Manager for Microsoft Nigeria, Ola Williams

Financial institutions must maintain a competitive edge and differentiation in a bid to understand customer needs and adapt to market trends while reaching the under-served and the unbanked.

These were the words of Country Manager, Microsoft Nigeria, Ola Williams, while speaking with journalists in Lagos. Williams said for financial service organisations, the focus must be on driving and empowering digital transformation across their organisations, end-to-end with a holistic viewpoint, embracing tech intensity rather than focusing on specific digital products and tools.

According to him, “the digital revolution is changing how banking gets done. Every bank is eager to evolve by using secure and compliant technology to fundamentally reimagine their business.”

He said maintaining a competitive edge and differentiation means understanding customer needs and adapting to market trends while reaching the under-served and the unbanked. The goal for every financial services organisation is to create loyal fans, not just customers, by delivering true value through personalised experiences.

He said: “At Microsoft, understanding the financial services industry’s needs and objectives is very important to us. We want to ensure that every organisation has the digital capability required to succeed going forward and are committed to helping our financial services customers improve time to value, reduce costs, increase agility, and accelerate innovation for sustainable growth.”

However, he said there are a number of key trends driving the evolution of the financial services sector. The expanding power of FinTechs and big tech, along with evolving customer experience expectations are two important trends, while increased regulation is constraining growth and adding costs.

He noted that legacy systems are impeding innovation and transformation, while the growing threat of cybercrime is a challenge the industry must tackle head on.

He said customers are leveraging digital engagement channels more than ever, and in response, financial services organisations are seeking to deliver differentiated customer experiences. The rise in adoption of digital banking products during the pandemic has driven banks to expedite their digital transformation agendas.