New apps and services from Microsoft customers and partners on display at Sibos financial services conference in Boston

At Sibos this week, Microsoft customers and partners are showcasing new technology to help financial institutions become digital banks. This includes a host of new Windows 8 apps, demonstrations on how the cloud can help banks do business in underserved and emerging markets, and a new partnership with the Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis center to help banks fight cybercrime.

Working in partnership with Microsoft, companies such as Citi, FIS, Pershing (a part of BNY Mellon) and Temenos will show off their latest and greatest apps and services at the conference.

The need for banks to become digital businesses is more acute now than ever. New competition in the financial services industry, regulatory pressures and the growing percentage of millennials (75 percent of the workforce by 2025) who expect digital experiences whether as a consumer, employee or corporate customer are creating massive pressure for banks to change.

Building loyalty with engaging customer experiences 

Financial institutions are creating new, engaging customer experiences with help from Microsoft. From giant PPI screens and digital signage that help illustrate key information to apps that help deliver real-time information to customers on-the-go, technology is able to deliver new ways to bank.

Today, for example, we’re announcing CitiDirect BE Tablet for Windows 8.1, an app designed specifically for the senior-level corporate treasury professional. CitiDirect BE Tablet provides on-the-go visibility into financial information through an easy-to-use, tablet-optimized experience. Citi is the leading provider of global transaction and trade solutions and offering this service now on Windows 8.1 gives its customers the security businesses require, across a range of devices.

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With the CitiDirect BE Tablet for Windows 8.1 app, execs can manage and see how much they have in their accounts around the world from any Windows 8.1 device.

Another example of a new app engaging customers is the FIS TouchPoint Suite built on Windows 8.1. A successful digital bank needs to be able to monitor all customer interactions no matter where they happen. To help banks do this, FIS, the world’s largest provider of banking and payments technology, announced the TouchPoint Suite. TouchPoint helps improve every stage of the customer relationship life cycle across all delivery channels: the branch, ATMs, call centers, online banking and mobile.

Empowering employees 

Another key factor in becoming a digital bank is the ability to use technology to engage employees. Relationship managers need to work from anywhere and meet and collaborate more easily and effectively. To help their wealth managers, BNY Pershing is announcing the availability of its NetX360 App for Windows 8.1 tablets. The app provides investment professionals the tools needed to manage client accounts, provide great customer service and help develop new sales and revenue opportunities.

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The NetX360 App for Windows 8.1 from Pershing provides investment professionals the tools needed to manage client accounts, provide great customer service, and helps develop new sales and revenue opportunities.

A number of leading banking institutions – RBS-Natwest, Saudi Investment Bank, Maybank, Group Finance Strategy and Systems and Citi Private Bank are modernizing their business operations with Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Microsoft Dynamics CRM helps banks to become customer-centric organizations through solutions that allow them to deliver great experiences while safeguarding data and meeting regulatory requirements. See the Dynamics CRM press release for details.

Another important way banks are empowering employees is by creating a data culture, where insights and decisions are formed through a sound understanding of the data available to financial institutions. The Royal Bank of Scotland, the leading provider of corporate banking services in the U.K., now gains near-real-time insight into customers’ business needs within the context of relevant, emerging economic trends. This was recently implemented on the Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Analytics Platform System to handle multiple terabytes of data more efficiently. As a result, the bank gained near-real-time insight into customers’ business needs and emerging economic trends. It cut a typical four-hour query to less than 15 seconds, and simplified deployment.

Building on the cloud

The cloud is a pivotal platform for digital banking. Employee engagement and new customer experiences are powered by a strong, cost saving back-end cloud infrastructure that provides financial institutions flexibility in how they deliver services. Microsoft’s cloud platform helps customers embrace the big trends and challenges of the new era of information technology.

A great example of where the cloud can help banks embrace new challenges is in serving traditionally unbanked populations. Microfinancing and banking services are essential to the growth of emerging economies, but it has been difficult for financial institutions to provide such services through systems operated in traditional ways.

Temenos is taking advantage of the Microsoft Cloud with its T24 core banking and micro-financing solution run on the Azure cloud. With this solution, Microsoft and Temenos provide access to financing for poor and rural populations in Mexico, Africa and, as of Sept. 1, Myanmar, at a very low cost. This is an important community service and also opens doors to new markets and future customer acquisition for banks – helping them compete with non-traditional competitors. It’s good business to give everyone access to banking, and the Azure cloud makes that possible.

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Leaders in the digital bank transformation are not leaving it to new market entrants to own the future of banking. They’re becoming digital information businesses. They are securely creating more engaging customer experiences, delivering the products, tools and services demanded by consumer and corporate customers, and leveraging the cloud to build new business models that were previously unattainable. They’re bringing together the cloud, mobile technology and data as the first step to a future of truly digital banking where computing is ubiquitous and makes it possible for financial institutions to be present in the financial lives of their corporate and consumer customers anytime, anyplace, across any channel and device.

For more information about the digital transformation in banking, check out the Sibos Newsroom for links to relevant content and images. You can also find out more about how Microsoft’s own Treasury department has created a data culture to get things done more efficiently and with greater accuracy.

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