In the digital age, the financial sector has reinvented itself as one of the pioneers in the field of digital transformation. Online banking, online advising, account management exclusively remotely, high-frequency trading, quantitative management,… We no longer count the many changes in each financial service. But first of all, what is digitisation? It is a process that aims to transform a tool, process or business into computer code in order to replace it and make it more efficient. Digitisation is now unavoidable and part of our daily lives, e-mails, social networks, e-commerce sites are just some of the examples of the effervescence of the phenomenon in recent years.
Digitization has conquered our daily lives and the banks. Indeed, it makes it possible to develop opportunities in all financial services, to dematerialize content by sharing it instantly. You can also share and work in a team with no limits on distance and time. In addition, it makes it possible to optimize working time by automating procedures with almost no operational risk. Not to mention that digitisation makes it possible to drastically reduce costs, since it makes it possible to do better with a reduced workforce.
For example, BNP Paribas announced this year the closure of 200 branches in France by 2020. This is due in particular to a sharp decline in branch influence, expensive structural costs and a radical change in the way customers interact with their bank, communication by e-mail, operations and consulting accounts on the Internet. Société Générale has noted that the proportion of its clients going to branches has increased from 57% in 2007 to 42% in 2012.
Digitization does not stop there. In Japan, a life insurance company announced that it has replaced 25% of its workforce with a robot equipped with artificial intelligence. Out of 131 employees, 34 will be laid off at the expense of a machine. The “Watson” robot is able to analyze thousands of data much faster than a human and is also able to learn and adapt to customer language.
Another striking example of the power of digitalization today : “In 2000, the share trading office at Goldman Sachs’ New York headquarters had 600 traders who bought and sold shares on behalf of the investment bank’s major clients, compared with only two today,” reports the MIT Technology Review.
One can wonder how Goldman Sachs succeeded in this challenge of digitalization and automation of its processes in such a short time. We can also ask ourselves what happened to the 598 traders.
What professional future can we expect in the banking sector? Moreover, what future is reserved for our children in a constantly changing societal environment. These are many challenges that we will have to face in the coming years!