Is Corporate Bank Ready to Advance to Digital Transformation?

Mike Asimos
4 min readFeb 13, 2022

Not all financial institutions have been open to upgrading their core banking systems. If you’re part of such an organization, it’s important to acknowledge that this delay places the company at a disadvantage. Adopting digital innovation at a much later date or at a slower pace can cause your bank to miss out on the many advantages that your competitors are enjoying by leveraging emerging technologies. Sticking with a legacy core banking system means that your organization needs to spend more time, manpower, and financial resources in order to accomplish tasks that other institutions are now automating or completing with the help of artificial intelligence, machine learning, big data solutions, and other smart innovations.

If your bank is not yet ready to embrace the digital revolution, what can you do to speed up the introduction of retail and corporate banking solutions to your organization’s top decision-makers? If ramping up the adoption of digital technology will significantly benefit your bank, how can you make this one of the top priorities in your institution?

In this article, we’ll explore some of the ways you can bring your bank up to speed with the digital age.

Prepare a Compelling Message and a Plan That Complements It

It’s true that making the shift from using a legacy system to employing a modern, digital one can be a costly and time-consuming investment, and convincing more traditional-minded leaders of the benefits of such an undertaking can be a considerable challenge. To get through this first hurdle, you need to prepare a compelling message that will get the decision-makers to your side. Perhaps, you can highlight the long-term cost benefits of upgrading your core banking system, compare the price of adopting emerging technologies today versus employing more people to do the same amount of tasks, or focus on the growing need for better safety, security, and compliance measures in the digital age.

After bringing these up, present a plan that makes use of digital solutions to address these issues. Seeing a practical plan will help traditional decision-makers acknowledge the urgency of adopting digital technologies.

Recognize the Specific Challenges That Digital Solutions Can Solve

As an alternative or in support of your compelling message, you can approach digitalization as a solution to your bank’s existing challenges. Which area of your banking system can benefit the most from digital innovation? Perhaps the bank’s current know-your-customer (KYC) process has been unable to keep up with applications from corporate clients, causing these would-be customers to look for other corporate financial service providers. This is a great opportunity to showcase the benefits of modern KYC solutions and introduce innovations that can speed up your KYC process while adhering to compliance standards. Or maybe your corporate bank is aiming to reach out to tech-savvy entrepreneurs? If this is the case, then it is a good time to insist on the need for core banking systems that are more accessible and appealing to business owners who are also digital natives.

Jumpstart the Transformation Process

It’s unlikely that you’ll convince your company’s decision-makers to embrace the digital revolution and upgrade your core banking system in one fell swoop, but you can speed up this process by focusing on one or more of your company’s pain points and turning it into a model of what digital innovation can do for your bank. Again, if your KYC system is no longer cutting it, you can focus on this first. If you succeed in showing how digital technology can significantly improve this problem area, then it will be much easier to compel the bank’s decision-makers to commit to long-term and broad-reaching initiatives to introduce digital solutions to the company.

Many banks are steeped in tradition, but this doesn’t mean that these financial organizations are averse to changes that are designed to optimize their processes, to cut costs, and to provide opportunities to improve their relationships with their corporate and retail clients. It’s no wonder, then, that many financial organizations have been quick to embrace the digital revolution in recent years. While their legacy systems have undoubtedly served them well in the previous decades, it has become quite clear to these forward-looking financial organizations that they need to adopt digital solutions in order to respond to the demands of a more tech-savvy market.

Getting the rest of your organization to adopt a more welcoming attitude toward digital technology can be an uphill battle, but it is key to ensuring that your bank will be able to keep up with the changing needs of retail and corporate clients. Once you can bring your organization into the digital fold, it will be much easier to convince the rest of your team of the benefits of embracing digitalization and keeping an eye out for emerging finance-related technologies. In due time, you’ll be able to foster a financial institution that has a high level of awareness of the need for — and the benefits of — continuous innovation.

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Mike Asimos

CEO and Founder of Charleston Capital Holdings in South Carolina