Innovations in corporate banking

The convergence of technology, functionality, and design

Ramkumar Seshadri,

VP & Head of Corporate and Commercial Banking, Virtusa

Published: June 12, 2024

In the dynamic realm of corporate banking, institutions are navigating a transformative journey fueled by technological innovation, functional expertise, and user-centric design. This evolution not only revolves around operational efficiency but also hinges on delivering unparalleled client experiences.

As banks embark on this journey, they face a critical decision between building bespoke solutions or leveraging existing platforms, amid a backdrop of fierce competition. Many banks struggle with outdated legacy systems that are not easily adaptable to modern digital banking requirements, hindering the smooth integration of new technologies and channels. Also, integrating new digital channels with existing banking processes and systems can be complex and time-consuming. Ensuring seamless interoperability between different channels and platforms is essential to providing a consistent and satisfactory customer experience.

In this exploration, we delve into the strategic initiatives undertaken by global banks, spotlighting how functional knowledge, user experience (UX) design, and the buy vs. build dilemma are shaping the landscape of corporate banking channel transformation.

Driving change in global corporate banking channels

Global banks are spearheading channel transformation initiatives to stay ahead in the competitive landscape. For example, Citibank embarked on a comprehensive digital transformation journey with its global transaction bank, focusing on enhancing digital capabilities and customer experiences. Through initiatives like the transaction portal redesign, the bank aims to deliver personalized, omnichannel banking experiences to its diverse corporate clients. Moreover, prominent banks in the Middle East and Asia are prioritizing user experience by implementing persona-based design and interactions driven by artificial intelligence (AI) at the forefront of their strategies.

Crafting functional expertise and UX design

In the race to differentiate offerings, banks are harnessing functional expertise and UX design to craft seamless and intuitive banking experiences. One of them, a large global bank, has pioneered the use of human-centered design principles in developing its digital banking platforms. By collaborating with clients and employing design thinking methodologies, the bank has optimized user interfaces and streamlined complex banking processes, setting new benchmarks for usability and efficiency.

The strategic dilemma

The buy vs. build dilemma presents a formidable challenge for banks seeking to engineer transformative solutions. HSBC, recognizing the need for agility and innovation, opted to build its proprietary digital banking platform, HSBC Kinetic. This platform caters to small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) and offers a suite of banking services tailored to their unique needs. By developing an in-house solution, HSBC retains control over the platform's features and roadmap, enabling rapid iteration and customization. Conversely, Standard Chartered, a British multinational bank, pursued a buy approach, partnering with fintech firms to enhance the bank’s digital banking offerings. Through collaborations with companies like Ripple and Ant Group, Standard Chartered has integrated cutting-edge technologies, such as blockchain and AI, into its existing channels, augmenting service capabilities and expanding market reach.

In the era of corporate banking evolution, the convergence of technology, functionality, and design emerges as a catalyst for differentiation and growth. As global banks navigate this transformative landscape, the strategic interplay between functional expertise, UX design, and the buy vs. build dilemma becomes pivotal. By leveraging their domain knowledge, embracing user-centric design principles, and making informed decisions on technology adoption, banks can carve a distinct competitive edge and unlock new avenues for value creation. In this dynamic ecosystem, innovation is not simply a choice; it’s a strategic imperative that propels banks toward a future defined by excellence in client experiences and sustainable growth.

Corporate banking 

At Virtusa, we specialize in digital transformation for global banks, combining deep industry knowledge with regional expertise. Our domain-led approach emphasizes understanding customer journeys and addressing pain points through innovative solutions. By collaborating closely with clients, we align transformation initiatives with overarching objectives, whether by enhancing user experience, driving revenue growth, or optimizing operational efficiency. We leverage our partner ecosystem to advise our clients on build vs. buy analyses and recommendations.

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