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Realizing digital – Learning from leaders

Learning from leaders

Wealth managers are adapting digital strategies to improve flexibility and client focus.

Andrew Weir

Global Chair, Asset Management and Real Estate, KPMG International; Regional Senior Partner and Vice Chairman

KPMG Advisory (China) Limited


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Focusing on the client

Our research indicates that many of the more advanced organizations are viewing their digital investments through a ‘client lens’. They are thinking and acting in a client-centric way, giving the client what they want, when they want. It must be user friendly.

What executives said: “Our priority is to drive greater convergence between bank technology and client self-service technology so that we can improve the client experience and the productivity of advisors. We want to make sure the two are not only aligned, but also supported by reliable data, better insights and timely alerts.”

- European domestic private bank

What are leading organizations doing?

Leading wealth managers are taking a step back to consider where they plan to play in the value chain and what client segments they hope to attract in the long-term. They are then creating longer-term plans, supported by enterprise-wide governance frameworks, that prioritize initiatives and investments that ultimately build towards that goal.

Partnering for success

All of the wealth management executives involved in our research say they are investing in initiatives to bring new ideas into their organizations.

What executives said: “We are constantly in dialogue with Fintechs and startups. We don’t see them as competitors. We see them as incubators, places where we can find new ideas and potential partners who can work with us towards a common goal.”

- Asian wealth manager at a global bank

What are leading organizations doing?

Leading wealth managers are forming a wide range of partnerships – from loose alliances through to joint ventures and strategic acquisitions in order to tap into not only new ideas, but also new capabilities, technologies and talent. Wealth managers are increasingly recognizing that partnerships are a valuable way to flexibly, quickly and cost-effectively improve the pace and success of digital investments.

Improving the pace of development

Executives recognize that traditional development approaches are no longer fit-for-purpose and are therefore moving their organizations towards more agile and flexible development models. Old ways of organizing development – waterfall methodologies – were not quick enough or agile enough.

What executives said: “We have had to learn how to combine an agile development framework with human-centered design approaches. I would certainly say that moving to an agile development structure has been critical to our digital success to date.”

- North American domestic private bank

What are leading organizations doing?

Leading wealth managers are adapting their development approach, their processes and their culture to encourage greater innovation and faster speed to market for new ideas. They are setting the right tone from the top with senior sponsorship and the confidence to ‘fail to learn’. And they are tapping into external talent with deep experience, shortening the innovation cycle.

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