InterSystems, a global provider of next-generation data solutions, has released a new study 'The Top Data and Technology Challenges in Financial Services Across Asia Pacific'.
The study investigates the biggest technology and data challenges facing financial services organisations, as well as their key data initiatives and priorities. It covers financial services companies in commercial, investment, and retail banks.
The survey includes respondents from across Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Malaysia, and Singapore; plus the US and Europe in the global version of the report.
Key results include 98% seeing data and application silos within their organisations; and 87% of APAC financial services organisations are frustrated trying to use their data to drive decision-making.
Other major findings include not being able to report on all relevant data (36%); not being able to get the data from all the needed sources (35%); and delayed access to data (34%).
The implications of these data challenges are significant, impacting a firm’s ability to properly serve its customers, the researchers state.
Easy and improved access to data is critical to the growth of financial services. Delayed access leads to firms accessing outdated data, leading to inaccuracies. In addition, it leaves business leaders forced to rely on assumptions, due to lack of relevant data, and compromise on the accuracy of information, adversely impacting decisions, according to the researchers.
South East Asian perspective
Kenneth Kuek, Country Lead, South East Asia at InterSystems, says, “Digital transformation and technology adoption in the South East Asian financial services sector is still in the incremental stage. However, it is encouraging to see that financial institutions are focused towards meeting changing customer demands by leveraging on tech. Overcoming their data management challenges will be the key to financial services providers’ success in the coming years."
“The challenges largely stem from overly complex data infrastructures, implemented with a disjointed set of technologies and applications. This leads to silos that make it difficult to obtain information and insights in a timely manner, and in a way that is easy to interpret and share,” added Kuek.
The study suggests there may also be a disconnect with how financial services organisations perceive themselves versus actual practice in data management. 60% of organisations responded that they are keeping pace with the rest of the industry in data management.
However, 46% responded that their organisations have a range of 1-24 data and applications silos, and 33% said that their data used for decision-making is at least 1-3 days old.
Andrew Aho, Country Lead, Australia & New Zealand at InterSystems, says, “To address data silo issues and getting up-to-date data, architectural approaches like data fabrics can speed up and simplify access to disparate data across the organisation by providing an integrated source of information. When the concept of a data fabric was explained, 79% of the respondents across ANZ said they would consider implementing one.”
A data fabric accesses, transforms, and harmonises data from multiple sources, on demand, to make it usable and actionable for a wide variety of initiatives. Hence, organisations gain more accurate, current, and comprehensive information while maximising the value from their previous technology investments, InterSystems states.
Besides data fabrics, financial services organisations can consider other next-generation solutions to manage their data effectively such as analytics tools, AI and machine learning platforms, and cloud-first data platforms among others.
ANZ financial services firms cite mastering data management (54%), replacing legacy systems (49%) and gaining access to real-time data to improve decision-making (48%) as their highest technology priorities for the next 12 months in the InterSystems study.
Aho says, “Implementing modern data management technologies is vital for financial services organisations’ success in ANZ. The volatile economy in the region and rapidly shifting global trends means business leaders have to ensure their organisations are more agile than ever. This starts with making sure the data they gather is accurate, and that the team is able to make sense of it and turn it into innovative yet practical solutions."
The study surveyed 554 business leaders within financial services companies including commercial, investment, and retail banks across 12 countries globally.