Balance needed in optimising the client experience

Institutional clients are adopting a much more rigorous process in the selection of their service providers as the future of the financial services industry continues to be defined by the digital agenda underpinned by technology and connectivity say Louise Currie, general manager, and Anke Frankland, senior manager, network and relationship management for Nedbank Investor Services.
By Joe Parsons
Technology and human engagement must be balanced in optimising clients’ experiences. That’s certainly the aim of managers of Nedbank Investor Services (NIS), the business of one of South Africa’s big four banks with an impressive record in meeting the needs of domestic institutional clients and consecutive top ratings in Global Custodian surveys. 

As a provider of custody services, our duties of safeguarding assets in a huge vault has evolved into protecting our clients’ asset ledgers and having robust defence against the threat of cybercrime.  

Digital being an enabler is not necessarily the solution to all client engagements, as we believe technology and human engagement should be balanced in optimising the client experience. Our institutional clients need the ability to interact with speed and decisiveness to minimise impact on fund performance while complying with the regulatory framework.   

Nedbank differentiates our client experience by having a high touch in these situations as we understand the environment in which institutional clients compete. This high touch is further expanded through our regular engagements, awareness campaigns and educational workshops to ensure that our clients remain informed. Robotic process automation programs (RPA) are deployed in the scheduling of the simple and repetitive tasks within the processing hub of the core custody services, and we retrain custody staff to become the analysts of information and exception management. 

In response to the ‘new’ technologies advanced as holding promise for post-trade processing, Nedbank has embarked on managing a data lake. This reviews data lineage from source product technologies to effect transaction monitoring for anti-money laundering, extracting data information for management oversight and having a holistic overview of clients to create a better value client proposition.  This speaks to the data requirements for Nedbank to meet regulatory and client demands.  

If we shift our lens to what is important to the client from a data perspective, we need to apply data analytics that stretch from the client’s technologies, to the communication link and the final data recording in Nedbank’s environment. When we consider this ecosystem, we see Nedbank’s role as custodian evolving to a performance monitoring function on the core custody services and closing the feedback loop with regular client engagements to improve on the benchmarks set. 

Our key focus on delivering an exceptional client experience enabled by people and technology is at the heart of everything that we do. This continuous effort will also enable us to build a more client focused, more digital, more agile and more competitive Nedbank.