With banks the world over exploring the business case for AI and robotic automation, a new report estimates that hundreds of billions of dollars in additional revenue may be up for grabs as the focus moves away from costs savings to income generation.
To date, automation technologies, such as RPA, have been implemented by the financial services industry to drive down costs and create efficiencies. But a new front is opening, with the deployment of machine learning tools for customer-facing interactions seen as new weapon in the armoury of banks facing the threat of competition from Big Tech players like Amazon and Alphabet.
Capgemini interviewed 1500 senior executives from 750 global organisations to draw out the benefits and challenges facing banks as they enter a new machine-learning era.
The study found that, on average, over one-third of financial services firms have seen a 2-5% increase in topline growth from automation, with faster time-to-market and improved cross-selling efforts as the key factors that influence gains. Meanwhile, 64% of organisations from across different segments have seen improvement in customer satisfaction by more than 60% through intelligent automation.
The report finds that more than half of firms (55%) are focused on increasing customer satisfaction through automation, while close to half (45%) see growing revenue as a key objective. Capgemini estimates that the financial services industry could expect to add up to $512bn to global revenues by 2020 through ‘intelligent automation'.
Challenges remain however, with a dearth of talent and legacy infrastructures seen as key barriers to adoption.
According to the report, only 10% of companies have implemented the technology to scale, with the majority of firms struggling with business, technology, and people challenges. Further, only around one in four has the technological maturity to implement cognitive automation technologies comprising machine learning, computer vision, and biometrics. Most organisations still have RPA, or - at best - Natural Language Processing (NLP), forming the backbone of their automation initiatives.
Anirban Bose, head of Capgemini’s Financial Services Global Business Unit says: “The most visionary financial services firms have leaders with a sophisticated view of the potential impact automation can have throughout their business. And they are already reaping the rewards. Hundreds of billions of dollars in automation-generated revenue is up for grabs in the coming years. Only those companies that deploy this technology in a way that looks beyond cost cutting and focuses on creating value for customers and shareholders will be able to win in the marketplace.”