Financial institutions are often top of the list of organisations that have been
slower to embrace digital transformation. Indeed, in a recent survey of financial services (FS) companies, half listed their organisations as only a ‘beginner’ or ‘implementer’ when it came to using digital services – with only a fifth (21%) believing that
their institution could be considered a ‘leader’ in the area.
Proceed with caution.
Of course, this has had its own knock-on effect on employee experience – especially when it comes to supporting more hybrid, flexible working. Security is, and always will be, a non-negotiable for FS institutions . While some staff were allowed to work remotely
prior to the pandemic, many banks and other FS institutions were reluctant to allow whole swathes of the workforce to work more flexibly. After all, concerns over remote access to data goes beyond worrying about leaked business information. We’re talking about
potentially leaked national, stock market and interest rate intelligence – the kind of breach that, if it happens, is likely to become front page news.
It was under this notion that we started working with two of the biggest financial institutions across Europe and the UK. Both organisations were faced with wanting to support their workforces to do their jobs from home during the pandemic, but also to modernise
their IT estates and create a better working experience in general. The time had come to modernise and to undergo a step-change – to create a fully-digital and flexible but, of course, completely secure, workforce.
A trusted partner
Overhauling its desktop infrastructure would be a big jump for any organisation that is used to a more ‘tried and tested’ approach. With both of the financial institutions we were working with, we knew there was a need for execution with caution. On the
one hand, we needed a flexible, digital environment which would create a better experience for employees and customers alike. On the other, we had to ensure everything we did would keep the banks completely in line with compliance and policy, and would guarantee
security at all times.
There’s a different level of security and a number of things you need to consider when running a deployment for a financial institution that you wouldn’t for other companies. For instance, some FS institutions can only make use of certain cloud environments
– those which are hosted in their own country.
The above meant that, for both institutions, a reliable IT partner was needed. A team who could essentially become an extension of their own team, successfully helping them through the change and working from a basis of shared values, understanding exactly
what they wanted to achieve and why.
Shift forward a couple of years to today, and we are handling all stages of end user support, from end point device management, device support, field support and software deployment – for both of these leading financial institutions. All of the solutions
used are well-established solutions, and we took the time to explain why each and every bit of software or new process was needed. Security is intrinsic to the employee experience, and we have built this into the heart of our design including as an example,
running security training for all employees as part of onboarding.
Faster, more reliable support
We’ve received nothing but positivity around the transition of service. As mentioned, big changes like these can cause wariness within financial institutions, but we’ve had a lot of great feedback how painless the change was. But, as well as creating a more
modernised working environment for staff, the banks have seen a number of operational changes too.
For instance, when it comes to patching compliance, something which is critical for any financial instruction, we have a target at one of the banks of 95% compliance. That is actually being run at the institution at around 99.5- 99.7%. It’s the highest level
of compliance that particular bank has seen for a significant time.
Furthermore, for one of the banks, we perform a random asset audit of the asset database on a quarterly basis. When we first started with the project, the bank only had a 54% accuracy but, through best practice asset management, process improvements and
operating procedures, accuracy is now at over 90% - and is improving quarter by quarter.
And, finally, we’re getting employees IT support either quicker, or before they even know they need it. By implementing proactive management tools, we can identify tools in the estate that are under-performing or performing badly and we can contact the user
– reducing downtime and frustrations. On top of this, when we took over running one bank’s end user support in the middle of last year, there were over 1,000 backlogged service tickets. Today, we’re thrilled to report that there are only 10.
BYOD To The Future
The hesitancy and concerns around security will always be top priority for leaders at financial institutions, as it should be. It’s important to note that with the correct approach, a well thought-out plan and trusted adviser, all FS organisations can properly
address the challenges of hybrid working, provide their employees with a flexible and more productive work environment with Security built as standard.