IBM (NYSE: IBM) has signed a five-year IT services agreement with Citizens Bank, N.A., a wholly-owned banking subsidiary of Citizens Financial Group, Inc. (CFG), to transition its back-end technology infrastructure to a managed services environment.
Faced with growing demands from digital-savvy customers, banks must modernize their technology environments to deliver a better banking experience to customers across multiple channels, while lowering their cost base. The agreement between IBM and Citizens will help Citizens drive greater efficiencies, improve service and lower costs.
Using a hybrid IT approach, IBM will optimize the bank's existing IT infrastructure by integrating automation and predictive analytics technologies to standardize and streamline many of its internal IT systems and processes, including core banking applications, branch operations and online and mobile banking. This will allow Citizens to shift its IT resources to more innovative, higher-value services, such as developing new online and mobile offerings in response to customer demand.
"Information technology plays a key role in our ability to anticipate and meet the needs of every customer, across every channel," said Ken Starkey, Chief Technology Officer, Infrastructure Services, Citizens Bank. "This agreement with IBM will provide immediate access to new technologies and capabilities, enabling us to create greater efficiencies in support of Citizens' growth objectives."
Under the contract, IBM will operate Citizens' existing and future IT systems located in the bank's data centers in Rhode Island and North Carolina. The bank's data center environment already is comprised of a number of IBM systems and technologies. IBM also will support Citizens' voice and data networks and provide IT support for all Citizens colleagues.
"As a leader in the financial services industry, Citizens is capitalizing on IBM's market leadership around automation and predictive analytics to provide a superior experience for its customers," said Philip Guido, general manager, IBM Global Technology Services, North America. "This is part of a multi-stage transformation of Citizen's IT environment that lays the foundation for integrating additional IBM solutions in the future, making the bank more agile and responsive to the growing needs of its customers."
Forrester Research recently positioned IBM as the leading supplier in global infrastructure outsourcing, based on an evaluation of most significant suppliers. In the report, "The Forrester Wave™: Global Infrastructure Outsourcing, Q1 2015," Forrester recognized IBM's vision for the future of infrastructure services, noting that cloud services has become a major element of IBM's infrastructure management strategy.'