How could something so young, such as a smartphone technology, cause so much disruption in the economic sector? In truth, not only has the mobile era revolutionized how we act and go about our day-to-day lives, but it has also forced many of society’s defining aspects in to hiding.
The finance sector is of course highly regulated and in many regards has always been that way – financial transactions, payment methods and the constant flow of currencies need to be protected, something that is clearly illustrated when one glances at the myriad of laws surrounding modern-day finance. However, there is change on the horizon. Actually its already here. We are living in a time where technology is rapidly evolving and it seems like every week there is a new way to accomplish a specific task faster, easier and more efficiently. Not only are mobiles and smartphone devices to blame, but we should also note the boom in new FinTech companies.
FinTech, or financial technology to be more precise, refers to the array of businesses that use software to provide financial services. A recent report by Accenture showed that global investment in FinTech had risen to more than 3 billion dollars in 2013, compared to the smaller (but still just as impressive) amount of 930 million dollars back in 2008. What’s more, FinTech is primarily spurred on by small Startups that rely heavily on software and apps, compared to what some may call the more “archaic” and regulated ways of how mainstream financial institutions handle money.
What’s interesting is that the tight-knit regulatory framework that encompasses the finance sector is undergoing massive change, notably due to the rise of new financial technology and by mobile devices. In a nutshell, this means that there is a constant flow of new rules replacing old rules when it comes down to finance – and that is something that will only speed up over the years to come (due to changes in customer behavior and constant innovation). This also means that digitization is frankly the only way forward. A few years back when smartphones were slowly emerging on to the market, people would still pop in to their local bank/branch to discuss their finances or even just to simply check their bank balance.
Now, apps on smartphones allow customers to directly view their balance in the comfort of their own home – furthermore, paying via a mobile device is rapidly becoming the norm. With internet connections and 3G/4G networks steadily becoming available to the masses, banks have reported a drop in people actually stopping by their offices – it seems that nowadays, only serious issues require someone to physically meet a representative at their chosen bank.
Its only natural that the trend spread to credit card companies, insurance companies, accountancy companies, consumer finance companies, stock brokerages, investment funds, hedge funds and more….. They too are now embracing the disruption. Financial companies looking to stay current, connected with a customer base on the go, and looking to minimize back-office expenditure, are also beginning to grow that number. They´re aggressively creating their own mobile-friendly websites, native and non native apps, and what’s more, innovation in FinTech is forcing them to adapt a different approach that includes better branding, client interactions, custom tools and feature integration and how data is delivered to the client.
We made it our goal to grow and develop our skills in this sector in order to address this enormous shift in this industry. A decentralized digital era where anything and everything, from individual to corporate financial information, is accessible at the touch of a screen or the swipe of a finger, means companies who rely solely on face to face relationships to grow their business, may at some point, begin seeing serious stunt in their existence. Even though the current global financial framework has been substantially shaken up by the aforementioned disruptions, that doesn’t mean that the services you offer should be left behind.
Birdie c Dequay @webchirps