IPBS counsels private banks and financial service providers to continue investing in technology

On Feb 23 2009 8:00 AM

IPBS counsels private banks and financial service providers to continue investing in technology

IPBS counsels private banks and financial service providers to continue investing in technology

• Modern integrated software critical for profitability and business survival

Nassau, Bahamas, New York and London, 23rd February, 2009 – International Private Banking Systems (IPBS, www.ipbs.com), the specialist provider of wealth management software for the private banking sector, today counselled private banks and other financial services providers that are facing diminished revenue streams to look to better and more efficient technology solutions to counteract bottomline impairment.

The private banking industry has been hit by falling revenues from smaller asset based management fees as fund and investment values have fallen and interest rate spreads have been effectively eliminated in all global currencies. With the current worldwide uncertainty analysts have forecasted an overall reduction in banking expenditure on IT in the next few years.

However, according to Bruce Raine, Founder and President of IPBS, failure to invest now could be a risky strategy in the long term, “Minimising costs by automating manual tasks is a critical strategic imperative that cannot be ignored at board level. Financial Services technology has a lot in common with the struggling auto industry. Using technology that was created 30+ years ago is the modern equivalent of driving gas guzzling cars, often with a crippling effect on business competitiveness, agility and survival.”

Software designed in the 70’s and 80’s is still in use today at many financial institutions. However, it is dated, inflexible and generally relies on highly labor intensive processes. As a result, extracting useful business intelligence from these technological dinosaurs has become an expensive manual process at best.

Effective business integration is now seen as the life blood of modern banking technology. It is all but impossible with the disparate legacy systems that evolved to manage separate business functions. Building the necessary bridges between these systems has often only been possible using manual processes.

“We believe that it is essential that private banks continue to invest in appropriate IT solutions to support their operations. Banks need to look for proven technology to ensure they remain financially viable and to gain maximum return on investment. The front and back office are key areas where modern banking systems can deliver higher rates of straight through processing (STP) and lower operational risk, whilst ensuring compliance mandates are met,” said Raine.

If the argument for continuing to invest in the back office is strong then the business case for doing so in the front office is equally compelling, where even more expensive labor is required to interface with and manage client’s ever more demanding requirements. The impact of technology can be seen with the introduction of E-banking. This has provided the customer with the information they require in an easy to use and understand format leading to the cost of running the front office to be dramatically reduced.

Raine concludes, “If automation projects are implemented correctly you can drive costs out of the front and back office. New technology can be an enabler to free up staff time that can be spent more productively on other value added client relationship activities which heavily influence customer satisfaction and profitability. By investing in modular systems that can provide specialised banking functionality private banks give themselves a better chance of coping with the current challenges and leave them well positioned for any future market recovery.”

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