BFSI sector has witnessed tremendous change since-March 2020, With the banks parading towards complete digitization, the banking professionals have an enormous challenge of adapting to newer technologies and mechanisms of delivering satisfactory services to customers in a secure encrypted environment. 

The BFSI veterans are predicting certain trends that will take the banking and financial sector by storm. So, before we set out to understand why upskilling is almost a mandate for growth in banking, let us understand how the banking landscape is transforming.

Top Trends Driving Banking and Financial Sector in 2021

  • Complete digitization of banking processes - The pandemic proved that if digital transactions can be scalable during a pandemic, it can become the norm of operations when it comes to payments in real-time. Though fully digitized banks or the concept of Neo-banks are not in vogue in India, banking professionals have to gradually brace themselves in case the need arises. 
  • Preference for a personalized banking experience - With daily operations going digital at an unprecedented pace, cybersecurity is building up as a case for top priority. Technology such as the Blockchain is increasingly becoming important in tracking cybercrimes and frauds. Adoption of these newer technologies is imperative to an organization’s growth. 
  • Close collaboration with Fintech partners - The banking sector has increasingly become 'high-touch', calling for increasing interaction between the consumer and the banking professional. Innovative ways of engaging with the client have pushed banks to partner with fintech companies to deliver seamless and personalized banking experience basing on AI capabilities.
  • Increased automation for eliminating manual errors and deliver process efficiency - Robotic Process Automation is increasingly getting adopted for minimizing errors in daily operations especially when the norms of social distancing and remote working has become the new norm. 

For any bank to build the foundation to assimilate all these changes into the organization and at the same time ensure continuous uptime is the real challenge. To build a strong operational foundation and ensure supreme banking experience, the banking veterans suggest following a 7-step approach and this entails:

  • Mastering data analytics 
  • Building on consumer experiences
  • Fostering innovation 
  • Mastering next-gen technologies 
  • Modernizing existing systems and processes
  • Upskilling the workforce

Upskilling the workforce is one of the sure-shot ways of equipping one's organization to prepare for the future. According to a report published by Outlook Money in January 2021, experts are predicting that the BFSI sector alone would provide jobs to 1.6 million skilled workers by 2022. This essentially points to the fact that there is an urgent need for skilled professionals who will help the industry transition to the next level of operations seamlessly. 

Organizations that want to prepare for the next level transition must encourage their employees to enrol for academic courses tailored to cater to next level professional challenges. Individually too, banking professionals can take up courses such as Executive Programme for Banking and Financial Sector (EPBFS) offered by IIM Calcutta in collaboration with Hughes Education. This course has been specifically tailored to empower banking professionals with all the knowledge and learning required to foresee challenges, solutions and opportunities in the coming times. The course meticulously covers the foundational concepts of BFSI and connects them to the current dynamics. The programme content has detailed modules on marketing, data analytics, post-pandemic regulatory adaptations, and quantitative tools for making critical decisions during a crisis period.