Filling Your Skills Gap

In 2020, it’s easy to get intimidated with the speed of change in the financial services world. Even the most confident executives may wonder how to keep pace with trends, regulations and technology. The key is to have the right individuals on your staff, and 2020 demands unique skill sets to meet a unique financial services world in constant flux. Consider the following individuals when  thinking about the staff you need to guide you into the future.

Innovation Officer

The only constant in the current banking world is change, and your organization should have an individual who is leading that change on a regular basis. In particular, the competition for utilizing technology in a meaningful way, the complexity of adhering to legal/security standards while sharing information online and the need for a competitive and unique brand offer all necessitate an innovation officer of sorts.

Think of your innovation officer as an individual who has the time, capacity and resources to step away from your day-to-day operations, evaluate your competitors, and do advanced “research projects” to explore and implement major changes your financial institution can undertake. This person is unique in that they must have the experience to make large, structural changes to your organization, be in touch with “what’s next” in the financial services world and have the capacity to implement change from a logistical, organization and financial perspective.

Open API

More than ever before, your organization should be working to switch to an open API. In layman’s terms, an open API means that your online information, especially customer data, is organized and stored in a way that is standardized and easy to share with other organizations in an accessible yet secure way.

This underlying format is important so that you can partner with FinTech companies, who often utilize this information in unique ways that can benefit your customers. You need to have someone on staff who “owns” this process. This individual doesn’t necessarily need to be a software developer, but they need to have a good understanding of your organization’s online data, have the capacity to hire out a transition team (perhaps in the form of a consultant) to establish your open API, and the ability to work with other vendors in the future to help them navigate your online data.

Cross Training Existing Staff

As we’ve talked about in the past, the universal banker is a valuable, jack-of-all-trades employee who can manage a wide variety of customer requests and tasks, from conducting a check deposit to providing consultation on a business loan. Contrary to the idea of being highly specialized, customers tend to want to deal with a single individual for a variety of requests and needs when they interact with a financial institution.

Cross training your staff opens the door to greater customer satisfaction, continuity of service on a visit or interaction of your financial institution, and this type of training arms your staff with information. Universal bankers drive customer satisfaction, and cross training opens the door for your staff to become more well-rounded and informed members of your organization.

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