Top Challenges Facing Bank CIOs Over the Next Year

Bank Systems & Technology asked several industry experts for their take on what will be the next big issue bank technologists will tackle in 2014.
October 04, 2013

As Bank Systems & Technology rolls out our 2013 Elite 8 award honorees this week, we acknowledge innovative work done by bank technology executives over the past year or so. But the work of a CIO is never done; in today's rapidly changing landscape the bleeding-edge technology of today could be commonplace six months from now. And CIOs may be tackling problems they don't even know exist at this point. So, what might be some of the projects our 2014 Elite 8 honorees will be working to solve? We asked a panel of industry experts to the question: What will be the biggest challenge facing bank CIOs over the next year?

Dealing with the Complexity of Data

David Albertazzi, Senior Analyst, Aite Group

While bank CIOs will deal with many challenges in the coming year as they face ever more complex organizations with vast and growing needs, one particular technological challenge raises to the top: Dealing with the complexity of data. The massive explosion in data is creating unprecedented manageability issues for banks around the world that can be linked to the following factors:

-- Expanding customer touch-points with the rapid growth of mobile, other wireless devices and digital bank channels.

-- Emerging types of both structured and unstructured data associated with new customer engagement platforms and social media content.

-- Real-time data processing and analysis necessary to provide timely insights to improve decision making, customer experience and expectations.

-- Rising data security concerns that continue to plague banks, both internal with the emerging challenge of Bring-Your-Own-Device, and external with mitigation of security breaches, malware attacks, service interruptions, and loss or theft of customer data.

Meeting these data-volume challenges can be costly: Legacy core banking systems involving multiple data warehouses and various transactional systems add up to a high total cost of ownership and require constant need for integration and interoperability. Increased regulations and compliance involving the tracking of financial transactions and customer data have augmented the responsibility of banks so that they must maintain the data, its accessibility and provide greater transparency to the regulators.

Implementing effective data access and management standards coupled with a nimble infrastructure architected around new delivery models such as cloud computing and using emerging technologies like Hadoop to leverage the power of unstructured data will be critical components in the arsenal of bank CIOs. With such imperatives in place, banks will be able to shift their focus from dealing with the complexity of data analysis, governance and distribution, to actually harnessing the data and using it to their advantage.

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