Two Keys to Enabling Digital Transformation for Community Banks

Onling banking app

One of the major themes of this year has been disruption. Whether driven by competition from non-banks and challenger banks, demand for the newest products, or behavioral changes from the pandemic, most banks have launched digital transformation initiatives.

The end game of digital transformation is not simply to survive the onslaught of competition, although that is certainly a driving force. Digital transformation is a path toward innovation on both the internal (cost reduction and product ideation) and external (customer experience) fronts.

Rather than race wildly to the finish line, however, community banks will embrace two things as they begin their digital transformation efforts.

Enhance your legacy systems

Take advantage of flexible API configurations to modernize your core. Cloud technology may go a long way toward improving efficiencies, but it still relies on the on-premises data from legacy systems. APIs, microservices, and operational processes can shorten release cycles, improving integration and delivery. Without a modernized core, seamless customer-centric experiences across channels are much more difficult to build.

Central to modernizing core banking is connectivity: integrating legacy systems with the cloud. More often than not, legacy systems were not built for service-oriented architecture, which would allow for the exchange of data between core and third parties.

A flexible API can craft a layer of integration that connects on-premises systems to the cloud. This layer gives your IT team or partner the power to take down or turn up applications that make sense for your business, without coding changes or impact to the core system.

This hybridization helps banks streamline processes, meet customer expectations, and open new revenue streams. Experienced API developers and implementation partners can help you quickly and cost-effectively shift your legacy system from a liability to an asset.

Develop your people

Take time to craft a culture of learning among your employees by offering development opportunities. Hosting weekly “ideathons” or “hackathons” can spark a collaborative, resilient spirit among your team and help them thrive through change.

In addition to building cultural change, a team focused on generating ideas can help banks speed their time to value. Gartner says consumers expect banks to offer new or improved products every 18 months or less. A team committed to innovation and customer satisfaction can help accelerate new product launches, drive process improvement, and reduce customer churn.

Bolstering a forward-thinking culture and developing people can go a long way toward managing internal disruption within your bank. It’s no secret that part of digital transformation is automation. When you introduce automation into a workplace, people sometimes become anxious about their roles within the business. Focusing your team on ways they can make positive impacts can help reduce unnecessary attrition and clear paths to problem-solving innovation.

Consumers’ needs are evolving, and so are competitors in the banking industry. Banks must be able to reduce costs and unlock revenue-generating potential quickly through digital transformation.

No matter where your bank is on the journey to digital transformation, Core10 can help. We’re a leading U.S.-based provider of API integration and SaaS implementation services to the fintech and financial services industry. Talk to us today.

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