When finance professionals think about their skill sets and interests, there are likely to be certain trends that arise within this profession: A propensity for statistics, an acknowledgement of the highly personal interactions that go into personal finance, and a genuine interest in helping consumers build their wealth and make smart financial decisions.
However, beyond these skill sets, retail banking relies more and more on individuals with hard skills related to data science, analytics and software development. Look no further than the proliferation of FinTech organizations in the past five years. Traditional financial institutions have been partnering with FinTech startups for some time to bring increased value to customers by leveraging their data in unique ways that help them save better, invest better or other creative ways to use their financial data.
With FinTech playing such a big role in the financial services world, it’s important to understand some of the base technologies FinTech is using, and why they’re powerful for software developers and bank executives alike.
The API Platform
Simply put, the open API platform is one of the most fundamental ways FinTech organizations can work with banks and credit unions to leverage their data in innovative ways. If not already in place, banks and credit unions should work with their legal and digital teams to provide an open API so that FinTech organizations can access their data, manipulate and utilize in ways that provide value and do so in the most familiar, industry-standard way possible.
Security screenings used to require a higher degree of human interaction to vet, analyze and take action on possible security threats and notifications. Now, much of these processes are automated, where FinTech organizations are sophisticated enough to provide data analysis that fully comprehends the security threat, takes automatic action (such as notifications or pausing accounts), sends back end record keeping, and can perform follow-up tasks depending on the customer’s concern and legitimacy of the security threat.
Robo-responders have become more sophisticated over time, and FinTech organizations can create personalized responders to address customer questions effectively in an online format. These types of systems are particularly effective when backed by a human element, but used on the front end to handle simple and straightforward requests, and provide a money-saving option for organizations.
Blockchain technology is still getting off the ground for the financial services world, but once it is fully established, it will allow for the automation and real-time security of peer to peer transactions. Simply put, blockchain will provide a universal and verified security system for online transactions between customers without the need for third-party mediation or supervision.
Data Science and Machine Learning
Data science and machine learning are at the forefront of data analytics for financial institutions, finding ways to capture large degrees of customer data, analyze it, apply it and learn from it moving forward. Data science is transforming financial institutions, serving useful in situations as granular as deciding what type of ad to show a customer all the way to giving context for major decisions within a financial institution’s executive team by providing valuable insights.