Financial services institutions know the pace of technology change is accelerating, and it is showing no sign of slowing down. The time it takes to go from breakthrough technology to mass-market application is collapsing. As the pace continues, this will create clear opportunities for those who are getting it right and increasing risk for those who are not agile to adapt to the pace of change.
It’s true that financial institutions are constantly looking for new technologies, ideas, models and solutions to drive digital transformational change and competitive advantage. They are also spending more on technology than they have ever spent. And the levels of technology spending are likely to continue to increase. With so much at stake and the pressure to do more, are some firms still playing within the margins and not fully pushing the boundaries to make the necessary digital shift?
The IDC Worldwide Digital Transformation Spending Guide, 2017 reported that the top 1000 businesses are spending $1.3Tr a year on digital transformation programmes. The spend is expected to double by 2020. Of the businesses surveyed, 93% of CEO’s are unhappy with the results they are getting from their digital transformation spend. This creates a significant opportunity for technology companies who can get the right level of C-Suite access, articulate the right solution to their key priorities and build trust that they can be a reliable partner to support their goals.
The fact is financial services companies get approached all the time, presented with new technology and digital transformation solutions that could meet their key business requirements. With so much noise, hype and the vast amount of different, competing technology approaches. It is difficult for these leaders to cut through the complexity to find the right solution for their requirements. In some businesses could this be stopping leaders from adopting new innovate technologies at scale as it may be easier, safer and less stressful to stick with the status quo.
It’s only going to get tougher and get more complex for all technology companies, due to the increasing pace of technology innovation, the number of new technology entrants each year into the market and the volume of approaches these technology leaders receive each day selling the new wonder solution. Ideas often get dismissed and never moved forward, not because the solution is not of interest. It sometimes comes down to they don’t have the bandwidth to unpick the offer, see a clear business case and potentially review every approach they receive.
For a technology provider, there are three key factors to success. The first is you need a clear understanding of the digital requirements of these organisations, and what are their key technology priorities. Where do you fit in and why is it important to them. Without some basic intelligence, you a presenting a solution and hoping for the best. Just because your technology is great, it’s not a reason for them to buy it. The next step is that you need a solid value proposition that matches the client’s requirements.
Don’t always make it about the technology; it’s the result the technology will give the client that is more important. How can you support their goals, plans, objectives today and in the months and years ahead? If you present real value, they will back the decision.
The final piece of the puzzle is meeting the CXO leader responsible for this change; they need to control the budget and make the final decision either way. Far too often I speak to firms who tell me they are in with big financial institutions. In reality, they are talking to people who have interest but have no authority to commit to the deal. This is creating long sales cycles and frustration on both sides. Unless you align these three areas, you will continue to drink lots of coffee without getting a slice of the cake.