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Advertorial feature by Hexaware

Why IT automation must be at the heart of every bank’s digital transformation

Investing in automation is one of the most resourceful actions financial organisations can take to future-proof their businesses.

By Hexaware

Bank of America’s online banking platform suffered an outage lasting several hours at the beginning of October, locking customers out of their accounts and triggering 12,000 complaints. It’s the kind of incident banking and payments companies live in fear of, impacting a vital service for customers and risking huge reputational damage.

Outages can befall any business in any sector, but in banking and payments these can produce calamitous fallout. As digital banking swallows traditional banking, the stakes get ever higher.

For more information about Hexaware’s TensaiTM suite for banks and financial services organisations, download the whitepaper.

The banking sector has become more precarious, with 80 per cent of financial institutions believing business to be at risk of losing out to innovative newcomers. Among younger customers, who are more likely to use digital services, one in three would be willing to swap banks in the next 90 days, and a similar proportion say they will not need a bank at all in the coming years. Banking CEOs are more concerned about the pace of technological change than other sectors. To keep abreast of technological change and remain competitive, it’s vital that banking firms adopt an IT-first strategy.

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Investing in automation is one of the most resourceful actions banking and payments firms can take to future-proof their organisations. Automation can help prevent outages, identify the reasons for outages faster and get an application back online as quickly as possible. Technologies like Hexaware’s TensaiTM for AI Ops digest data from multiple sources and automate routine tasks like monitoring, managing and testing across an organisation’s hardware, networks, data centres and software. TensaiTM for AI Ops uses pre-emptive pattern recognition to flag anomalies and analyse events in order to rapidly remedy disruptions.

“We deploy what we like to call a ‘neighbourhood behaviour watch’ using time series-based algorithms to find answers for questions like, were any other systems or network devices impacted around the same time or were there other applications that could potentially be affected?”, says Hexaware’s executive vice president and practice head (Digital IT Ops), Hemant Vijh. “This helps us in incident isolation and tells us how severe the issue is.”

TensaiTM for AI Ops uses self-healing bots to automate the solution for up to 40 per cent of incidents. “The way we look at it, the best incident is the incident that never happened,” says Vijh, adding that “as soon as the system detects an anomaly that needs action, the automation engine kicks in to analyse and resolve it before human intervention”. It can estimate the revenue impact of an incident too, translating technical data into actionable business insights.

Leading companies are, more deeply, integrating AI in customer-focused applications, back-office applications and risk management, according to PwC research. Automation of core technological components creates a foundation upon which more sophisticated operations can be layered, like onboarding new clients, credit scoring and electronic know-your-customer. Hexaware’s TensaiTM range of products delivered automation-enabled savings for a Swiss bank, achieving a more than 400 per cent return on investment (ROI). Banks that wish to remain competitive require a future-forward stack that marries core systems and automated analytics in an integrated architecture.

One of the greatest challenges for automation in banking and financial institutions are siloed, complex and expensive-to-maintain legacy IT systems. Technologies like TensaiTM for AI Ops can unify disparate data sets and create synergy between different systems – pushing down transaction costs and exploiting new customer data sets. It places IT leaders in the control room, with a dashboard view of all of the interacting systems and workflows, marrying the technical and business sides of the operation.

While different businesses have specific requirements in terms of workflows, Vijh says “if you have to commission or decommission a particular server/environment, or any other similar workflow, there are multiple components that need to be stitched through”. He continues: “We have automated the whole chain there. For one of our customers, there was a ten-member team that was just doing this work, but now our bots are actively doing that job much faster and without any manual effort.”

Fewer than 20 per cent of automation deployments reach the scale they want because enterprises are unable to identify use cases. Hexaware helps organisations apply a systematic approach to discover use cases where automation will add the maximum value, letting them realise scalability upfront. Automated self-monitoring and preventive maintenance diminish the risk of disruption to vital operations and ensure applications run as smoothly as possible.

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