Poll: Mobile, Compliance and Core Upgrades Will Shape Global Financial Institutions' 2014 Plans


According to a survey of financial industry decision makers conducted by Fiserv during Sibos 2013, one of the world's premier financial services events, 2014 looks to be a year driven by investments in mobile banking and payments, compliance and core account processing systems. Clearly, when financial institutions consider the future, they see technology playing an ever-growing role.

Mobile Banking and Payments Investments on the Rise

The rise of the mobile channel has prompted a wave of financial services innovation and more and more consumers are using their mobile phones for financial activities. The need for new investment to match this new reality is reflected in the feedback from the Sibos conference's global attendees. According to the survey results, 83 percent of respondents anticipate an increase in their organization's mobile banking and payments investments over the course of the next 12 months, with 29 percent expecting their investment in mobile technology will increase by more than 50 percent. Only 17 percent expect their mobile technology budgets to remain the same or shrink.

Some of this investment will undoubtedly go toward tablet banking capabilities, given that 41 percent of the respondents are viewing the development of financial capabilities for tablets as an extension of the mobile channel. Almost as many (38 percent) are treating tablets as an extension of the online channel, while 14 percent are treating tablets as a new, distinct channel, an approach that Fiserv advocates.

There's no disputing where investment in mobile is expected to take place: nearly half (46 percent) of those surveyed believe that Asia will lead the way. Industry professionals from the region expect mobile technology investments to increase by more than half in 2014. Investments in Europe and Africa are expected to see smaller, yet still substantial increases.

Which region will see the greatest investment in Mobile Banking and Payments in the next 12 months

There are greatly differing opinions on the viability of mobile wallets as a payment option, with 24 percent of respondents saying they are a viable option today. However, just as many feel they won't be a viable payment option for 12-18 months, and 17 percent think that while mobile wallets will eventually take hold, it will take two years or more.

Compliance and Core Banking Systems

Next year also looks to be a year for significant investments in compliance. The vast majority of respondents expect their organization to increase compliance budgets, with twenty one percent of respondents expecting increases of 50 percent or more.

Core Banking Forecast Compliance Spending

Most respondents expect Basel III, followed by FATCA and SEPA, to be the regulations with the most impact on their organizations in the coming year. When asked about their biggest concern related to compliance with regulations, one-third cited the monetary cost of compliance as their primary concern, while 21 percent cited acquiring the necessary skills to achieve compliance and 18 percent cited changes to existing IT infrastructure required to achieve compliance.

While the growth in mobile banking, payments, and compliance investment is expected, a surprisingly large number of respondents, nearly half, revealed that they anticipate a significant upgrade or replacement of their organization's core account processing system within the next two years.

Overall, these survey results indicate that financial institutions are moving past the uncertainty caused by the economic crisis and towards a future where technology will play a key role in enabling efficiencies and future growth.

Watch these videos for more insights from Sibos Dubai 2013:

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