The Continued Evolution of Digital across Financial Services in 2020

Tim Yu 28.04.2020

In the past ten years, Digital has evolved from being a subset of both marketing and IT, to now having its own defined department.

Companies without a well defined digital ecosystem and long term strategy face the challenge of retaining employees versus businesses that embrace and prioritise digital first agendas.

To add to this, in times of remote working, where companies have had to adapt at lightning speed, the importance of Digital has yet again hit the headlines.

Whilst we have seen a decline in retail, hospitality, tourism and travel industries, there is no doubt that across FMCGs, Telecommunications, Technology and Payments, there is still plenty of digital hiring activity. Now, more than ever, is the time for digital innovation, regular virtual communications and of course, speed and efficiency of payments and transactions. 

The Market today

In Banking, most tier one banks are in later stages of their digital transformation periods and are now focusing more on Customer Experience / CX Programs to answer their customers’ needs and cement their loyalty.

For Banks and Insurance companies, the immediate focus is on retaining existing clients to maximise Customer Lifetime Value (CLV). However, FinTech and Insurance Disruptors are seeing a huge appetite to grow and innovate at the moment and therefore are looking for the next best digital specialist, to come on board and assist with acquisition and conversion driven digital marketing activity.

Digital Innovation like Barclay’s Accelerator Program, Citibank’s D10X, Aviva’s Digital Garage & Aviva Ventures, amongst other banks’ innovation hubs, are how corporate entities are keeping up with FinTechs and retaining top digital, innovation and product staff.

Following Insurance, the investment management industry is embracing and adopting digital at an increased rate. Retail houses are moving away from traditional broker and advisor channels to ‘self service’ models using website technology, mobile app and contact centres. With fewer face-to-face meetings, processes can often speed up and streamlining decisions will often benefit the end consumer from an online customer journey perspective. 

We have noticed more than a few Asset Managers recently restructuring (centralising or decentralising) their digital marketing departments from a marketing transformation perspective, as Asset Managers focus more heavily on digitalisation due to an increasing need to target a younger demographic - a mobile generation

In the FinTech market, there is huge demand for digital product managers/owners; people who can set out the strategic product roadmap and deliver. By definition, the FinTech industry is a faster speed to market from a delivery perspective, but their main challenge is how do they commercialise and become a profit making business, whilst also acquiring and retaining customers?

What to expect next?

If you’re planning your next hire you need to be aware that top calibre digital talent will be attracted by a ‘digital first’ or ‘digital-centric’ mindset so be prepared to showcase what your business has to offer.

In terms of roles, in digital marketing, there has been a shift away from generalists into specialist digital marketers across CRM, Database, Email marketing (retention) and Digital Content. There has been a rise in the demand for UX / UI developers recently, particularly on an interim or project basis, and these roles often command a premium in salary or day rate.

For companies looking to enhance their web, mobile or other digital ecosystem engagement offering to consumers, their next move might be to recruit more software / app development specialists. Others may place increased importance on using data and insight-driven, Artificial Intelligence/Machine skill sets, in their growing wider digital departments. 

In times like these, companies are also investing internally, so as to adapt to remote working and ensure staff are educated on how it can help grow the wider business (aka digital champions/program delivery specialists) and may well need internal communications specialists to promote such activities. 

For further information on the market and to discuss challenges that you or your business might be facing, please do not hesitate to contact me directly for a more detailed chat.

Tim Yu's picture
Senior Consultant | Digital | Financial Services | Fintech


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