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Payments General

Fiserv open banking survey shows emergence of strategic focus

Wednesday 28 November 2018 | 08:52 AM CET

UK-based fintech Fiserv has issued a survey revealing insights into the implementation of open banking by banks in the UK, Poland, France and Australia.

LM Research & Marketing Consultancy conducted the online survey on behalf of Fiserv between 21 August and 1 September 2018. A total of 400 respondents in the UK, Poland, France and Australia participated, with 100 respondents from each country. Respondents represent retail banks of asset values from less than USD 250 million to more than USD 300 billion.

To date, banks have primarily focused on compliance, with only 42% of respondents (and just 24% in Australia) saying their strategy for open banking goes beyond day one. However, some banks are beginning to leverage open banking for strategic initiatives such as improving customer service.

Banks are united in the belief that open banking will have an impact on financial activities, with 67% expecting at least a moderate impact, and 27% of those saying open banking will completely change how customers manage their finances and interact with their banks. Across geographies, financial institutions report difficulty recruiting engineering talent for open banking projects, and many say they lack enough personnel and the necessary skill sets to stay or become complaint. The majority of banks that are already compliant say they would have executed differently knowing what they know now.

The majority of respondents from banks in Europe with USD 300 billion or more in assets reported that they had already implemented open banking projects. In Australia, where the largest banks are required to adopt open banking by July 2019, banks plan to implement beginning in the first half of the year.

When looking at respondents’ views on what their open banking strategy encompasses, there are indications that banks are eyeing the strategic opportunities associated with open banking. Integrating with third-party services (38%), defending against transaction fees (38%) and maintaining customer relationships (36%) were the most common components of respondents’ open banking strategies. Smaller, but still notable, percentages of banks view open banking as an opportunity to improve customer service (21%) or facilitate access to new services for customers (16%).

Only 13% of those that have already implemented open banking said they are happy with their implementation and would do nothing differently. Many others said they would have relied more on outsourcing, with 46% saying they would outsource third-party provider (TPP) life-cycle management, and 23% saying they would outsource the complete open banking operation. On the flip side, 11% said they would have built and maintained everything in house.

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