Banking & Financial Services

New Technology Combining Digital Payments and Messaging Services is Changing the Payments Landscape. Now You Can See Request-to-Pay in Action

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Exela Technologies is paving the way for the future of billing and payment in the UK through our Request to Pay (RtP) platform. In order to shed some light on RtP, we decided to share details about Request to Pay, its implementation, industry challenges, and more during our webinar, “Request to Pay: In Action!

RtP software emphasizes communication and transactional efficiency for both payor and payee, allowing for secure messaging to take place before bill payment. The service is meant to overlay on top of the existing payments infrastructure to help businesses, organizations, and individuals handle bill payments with more ease, flexibility, and efficiency.

How RtP works

RtP allows a biller or payee to send an electronic request for the payment to the debtor account directly. The payor receives this request via an electronic interface such as a mobile banking app, reflecting the requested amount and the due date of the payment request.

On the payor side, the platform offers options that include making the payment in full, sending a partial payment, sending messages, raising requests for an extension, and more. 

Request to Pay offers both sides of a transaction greater flexibility while making payments. It also increases transaction transparency, reduces the cost for billers, and gives both parties a better transaction experience.

Integrated communication and payment platforms are poised to become far more commonplace. Join us to learn more about this exciting technology! 

Request to Pay: In Action!

In our upcoming webinar, “Request to Pay: In Action!” you can get a look at this exciting new technology and learn more about how it will reshape the payments landscape. On Thursday, June 24, join Exela’s moderator Chris Vincent and a group of experts and panelists including:

  • Martin Kirby - Head of Order to Cash | Business Stream 
  • Simon Brooks - Faster Payments Service Line Manager | Pay.UK
  • Richard Lean -  RtP Product Expert | Exela Technologies 
  • Paul Horlock - Chief Payments Officer | Santander 
  • Paul Fairless - Director Business Development, Payments and Banking | Sage

The webinar will include demos of Exela’s RtP app, an in-depth look at the benefits for billers and payors, a discussion about the future of billing and payments, and plenty of time for Q&A with the panelists.

 

Register for the webinar today!

 

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The Exela Team
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Industry Solutions

How Request to Pay Improves the Bill Payment Process

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Every year, our reliance on technology grows. Software, automation, and instant gratification at the click of a button have become the norm, and many of our brightest minds work to innovate and create new technology that meets and exceeds our expectations.

While it may not be the most exciting technology sector for some, modern payment architecture is being shaped by these same forces. New mobile and desktop applications through banks and service providers make it possible to transfer money at the click of a button. And during the COVID-19 pandemic, the virtual exchange of money took on a greater purpose -- helping us avoid unnecessary in-person contact. 

Payment innovation is an essential driver of digital transformation in banking and financial services. One of the latest developments with a potentially massive impact is the introduction of Request to Pay services. 

Request to Pay: What is it?

RtP software places emphasis on communication and transactional efficiency for both payor and payee. According to Pay.UK’s official RtP website, the service is meant to overlay on top of existing payments infrastructure and can serve to help businesses and organizations handle bill payments, as well as settle bills between friends. The unique feature RtP brings to the table is allowing the payor to communicate with the payee even before the bill payment. The US and India have similar services, often called Request for Payment and UPI payments, all of which are changing the payments industry and placing an emphasis on interoperable payment systems.

The Request to Pay ecosystem consists of 3 parts, the Biller portal (or the payee side), the central repository managed by accredited financial institutions and the payor app. It works on the principles of Open Banking, which means different financial institutions, billers, and payor apps on the RtP system can interoperate creating an open, flexible network that benefits all. 

What does this mean for businesses?

This past year has been defined by change, due in no small part to the global impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. In the face of stay at home orders and social distancing guidelines, unprecedented emphasis was put on digital solutions that could empower newly remote workforces and help organizations strive to continue operating at full capacity. By adding a level of communication between payor and payee, RtP provides full visibility into the audit trail and helps to avoid issues brought upon by a lack of communication during the process.

This offers a number of benefits for businesses. First, RtP can speed up transactions - always a goal in today’s fast-paced world of instant gratification. It also provides greater visibility and transparency for all parties, offering insight into where bottlenecks are occurring, and helping to minimize errors in the process. For example the payee or the biller has better visibility on the payment behaviour of each payor, giving them a chance to send reminders to the later payors, provide a payment plan to those with financial shortfall, or offer rewards or incentives to those who always pay on time. For the payor too, it is possible to see all the invoices in one app making it easy to have more control over their finances. 

Perhaps most importantly, RtP offers potentially enormous cost savings. The time and effort businesses spend chasing down late payments, tracking a payment lost in the midst of the billing process, and sending follow-up statements isn’t often top of mind, but these costs can add up quickly. The communication enabled by RtP is designed to significantly reduce this spend.

RtP will also help realize some of the potential benefits of other payments technologies, like electronic invoicing. Unlike the many “closed” networks that are currently unable (or unwilling, due to lack of incentive) to interface with other competing network, creating a siloed and disjointed payments infrastructure, RtP will allow everyone to exchange data and communicate - much like email users can send and receive emails from people using entirely separate email services.

Register for the Request to Pay Webinar

Why should you care?

Adding touchpoints and communications to payments software takes greater advantage of the influx of connected devices to increase efficiency and provide better service to clients and customers. RtP is one way that the payments ecosystem is adapting to new demand. It is an agnostic solution with use-cases spanning across industries such as utilities, government or federal businesses, insurance, telecom, and more. 

RtP adds to the ever-increasing stable of software solutions that are updating and optimizing previously manual business processes through automation. In this case, providing instant payment requests, communication, and visibility of the process brings the speed and efficiency of payment processing to a new level. Digital transformation is taking place in all parts of business, and RtP is a great example of how it’s being done in the UK’s financial services industry.

 

Register for the Request to Pay Webinar to learn more about Exela’s Request to Pay Biller portal and to hear industry experts discuss the benefits, its implementation and the demo in detail.

 

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Matt Tarpey
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Industry Solutions

Prepare Your Business for the Future of Payments

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Payments are a fundamental part of business – from the local mom-and-pop shop all the way up to global enterprises. So, technology changes occurring in the payments industry tend to have a big impact. And make no mistake, changes are coming. Check out the latest edition of PluggedIN: The Future of Payments for a look at some of the biggest trends in payments technology, including:

  • The Past, Present, and Future of Payments
  • Request to Pay: Payment Meets Communication
  • The Rise of Real-Time Payments
  • Integrating and Automating: From Procurement to Payment

PluggedIN is Exela's thought leadership publication, providing fresh insights from the cutting edge every quarter. Subscribe to get plugged in.
 

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Matt Tarpey
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5 Ways Leveraging a Single-Source Transaction Processing & Information Management Partner can Provide Optimal Service, Delivery & Savings

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Partnering with specialized, external suppliers is a time-tested, highly effective way for enterprises to free up resources, enabling them to focus on core business objectives. In fact, 57% of executives interviewed for a recent Deloitte survey on the subject noted that exact reason as their motivation for engaging an outsourcer originally.

As organizations evolve, they are looking to off-load business critical daily operations to specialty providers - accelerating performance and innovation, reducing costs, and streamlining business processes across the enterprise.

In particular, two growth areas have emerged; enterprise information management (EIM) and transaction processing services (TPS). In this information-driven age, it is crucial that businesses  effectively manage the growing amounts of information and data, as well as efficiently process payments, transactions, enrollments, applications, and statements—allowing them to focus on revenue-generating activity.

When an organization is evaluating whether to outsource a business process or keep it in-house, the number of vendors that would need to be involved in a successful outsourcing initiative should be one of the first considerations.

If you're managing multiple vendors in relation to your TPS and EIM needs, many of the operational efficiencies, cost savings, and management streamlining that these partnerships provide can be negated by the complexities of managing multiple relationships. If you need multiple vendors to handle your organizations business processes, is there really an advantage over simply managing multiple internal departments?

But, by partnering with a single-source provider; your enterprise can achieve optimal efficiency, maximum cost savings, and the ability to streamline operations to refocus more exclusively on customer service and growing your business. Read on for five reasons why partnering with a true end-to-end TPS/EIM provider is the optimal approach:

  1. TPS & EIM are Inherently Linked

    Partnerships with specialized companies have become a go-to strategy for enterprises trying to refocus on core, revenue-generating work. Yet, many benefits of this approach can be negated by complicated vendor management scenarios. For example, EIM platforms can facilitate the exchange, consolidation, organization, and analysis of large amounts of structured and unstructured data that are crucial to an enterprise's ability to effectively manage decisions, and enable the presentment of critical customer information through unified communication services.

    TPS offerings then use the structured data output from shared EIM platforms and apply industry and customer specific rules-based data validation, management of exceptions, business automation, and outcome resolutions to complete transactions, client interactions, and other operational processes. From there, these fully integrated EIM and TPS platforms, help facilitate reliable information workflows through data aggregation, seamless connectivity, and automated processes to significantly reduce cycle times and improve quality.

    When platforms are integrated and supplied by the same provider, these types of workflows are made possible. When multiple partners are providing disparate platforms to manage payments, communications, and more – management scenarios can balloon in terms of complication.

  2. Linking EIM & TPS Outsourcing Services can Provide Optimized Cost Savings

    Having established the inherent connections between TPS and EIM services and solutions, we can begin to see the inherent value in keeping these activities under the same roof. Single sourcing, defined as the practice of using only one vendor to handle the entirety of outsourced processes -  is widely recognized as a beneficial approach producing far greater advantages. Single sourcing offers various benefits such as lower production costs, and can help create better value for customers and stakeholders by keeping the amount of governance required to a bare minimum. Working with a single vendor is often more cost effective as it enables better utilization of resources – both managerial and financial. It also cuts down the interoperability issues significantly. In this case, two metaphorical heads are not better than one.

  3. Increase Delivery & Efficiency of Service

    Working with a single vendor to handle the entirety of your needs can streamline service delivery in several ways. A single-source partner takes responsibility for the entire service delivery process within the outsourced operational areas. There is no pointing of fingers or blame on others for non-performance or delay in delivery. This sense of responsibility can result in more effective and efficient delivery of products or services. It also streamlines the amount of oversight you'll need to allocate internally, because as the number of vendors rises, so does the amount of internal oversight they'll need.

  4. Decreased Training & Governance

    Any worthwhile outsourcer will make your business easier to manage over time. But, like any new business relationship – there is an introductory period to share necessary information for each party to handle their responsibilities properly. This means you'll need to onboard and govern each outsourcing vendor you work with. In the case of single-sourcing, a business needs to train only one service provider. Saving considerable amount of time and energy for the enterprise, which can subsequently allocate their resources – human and financial - to more critical areas.

  5. Increased Control over Branding & Corporate Image

    A substantial part of the EIM/TPS mix is represented by communications. Payments – in the forms of invoices, bills, statements, or receipts – are themselves communications. Many pieces of information that need to be produced, distributed, and managed by an outsourcing partner are communications as well. When these communications are produced by multiple vendors, it can affect branding negatively through disparate output quality, data inconsistencies, or lack of coordination between vendors. When all operations are done under the same roof, it helps avoid the above-described issues, while boosting the quality of work and helping ensure that the highest quality of service is provided to your customers.

To conclude, it is easier to derive the maximum value from your externally-based partnerships when the number of vendors you need to partner with is kept to a minimum. Especially in the related fields of TPS and EIM, placing all of that work with an organization who can handle it in an end-to-end manner is simply the best practice.

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Peter Bohjalian
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The ‘Experience First’ Future of Banking: 3 Ways Digital Transformation Helps Banks Create a Customer-Centric Model

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The way customers interact with their bank is changing - from in-person communication at a brick-and-mortar location to a digital-first, omni-channel experience. Mobile check deposit, payment gateways, and app-based banking in general have changed customer expectations, and in turn, they have driven the need for continued innovation from the financial services sector. At the same time, digital transformation has heavily impacted the ways in which banks improve internal processes, enhance relationships with clients, address data security, and ultimately, provide value to their customer base.

Further – not all customers want the same things from their banks in 2017. Older customers seek simplicity – a straightforward experience that provides financial peace of mind, whether their transactions are handled digitally, in-person, or with a combination of service delivery types. While younger customers such as millennials look for drastically different offerings – peer-to-peer payments, robo-advisory platforms, digital wallets, budgeting tools, and more. Such offerings have typically been dominated by FinTech disruptors, which if not successfully countered by more traditional banks – could lead FinTechs to capture an increasing market share of younger customers as they continue to expand into new product offering categories.

Whatever the underlying motivations may be – FinTech disruption, vastly different customer demands, or a combination – banks must address their digital readiness gap and adapt to this new landscape of the distributed “unbundling” of banking services, driven by the increasing demands of customers of all ages, and the FinTech upstarts themselves.

In response, banks are shifting from a largely product-centric viewpoint, to a more customer-centric model. Satisfying the distinct, and different sets of desires for each customer segment requires becoming a truly customer-centric bank, which in turn demands a full embrace of digital transformation. Necessitating updates in business processes, IT architecture, culture, and overall operating models.

While digital transformation is becoming more commonplace with larger financial institutions, it can increasingly be a barrier to entry, or a distinct competitive challenge for smaller, regional financial organizations with smaller IT and marketing budgets. To keep up with competition without overextending resources, or losing focus on core competencies, this type of organization may turn to a technology partner to industrialize their FinTech solutions and extend these offerings to their customers.

But regardless of the size of your organization, here are three concrete ways that digital transformation helps create sustainable, long term success by creating a human-centered model of operations.

    1. Digital transformation of back-end processes and automation of workflow processes can modernize and drive the front-end user experience

Customers want seamless, easy-to-use banking experiences, regardless of channels – mobile, online, or even in-person. Whether the experience is related to depositing checks, exploring services, opening an account, checking balances, getting loans, managing wealth, or customer communications/support, effectiveness across channels has become crucial. If you can’t offer your clients these services in a safe, secure, and convenient manner – they may well take their business elsewhere. So, how does digital transformation help banks create and serve these experiences to their clients?

Implementing an effective, multi-channel data ingestion and integration platform can aid with actions like mobile check depositing. Highly-targeted and personalized communication platforms can help drive upselling, cross-selling, and accurate segmenting of audiences for marketing. At the same time, optimizing business processes through a highly configurable management interface enables the creation of bank-specific document or case management workflow, and can streamline operations for employees on the back end.

Other key digital trends for banks include mobile payments, services on multiple device types, automated account origination, the previously-mentioned personalized marketing and promotional offers, and customized customer administration tools. A purposeful digital transformation effort can aid with all these initiatives.

Ultimately, business transformation aided by process automation, digitization, and complete accountability can lead to improved customer experience and enhanced business performance. But, another connected consequence of these digital transformation trends is that they are altering the roles of bank branches, and the jobs of branch personnel. Which leads us to our next point.

    2. Digital Transformation Frees Human Capital from Traditional Branch Banking Processes

As the way customers interact with their bank transforms, the way that financial institutions manage their branches is changing in-step. At the branch level, for instance, banks are retraining employees in new proficiencies, repurposing and evolving their focus from being reactive in terms of customer service, to becoming tech-enabled client advisors and counselors – creating additional value for customer and institution alike in the process.

Armed with tablets and powerful digital banking applications, these client-focused bankers can guide customers as they navigate digital banking choices and services, while simultaneously administering new accounts, and handling security or background checks as well. Customer data collected by these employees, or through other bank/client interactions, can help banks provide more personalized digital experiences, as customers look for the exact combination of banking products that will fit their unique needs.

In the end, whatever approach your organization decides to take, digital transformation provides a revolutionary opportunity to allow traditional banking service models to be reimagined, providing a more effective model for customer service as traditional offerings like check depositing become almost wholly digitized.

    3. Digital Transformation Can Help Create Powerful Customer Loyalty & Brand Equity for Banks

Consumers have come to expect the same convenience and customer service levels from their bank as they expect from Amazon. Best class experience is best class, across industries. The reality is that, with fewer in-person interactions at branches, delivering consistently positive customer experiences is a key challenge to solve. There is no way to greet a customer with a warm smile and a handshake when they are simply logging into an app, or remotely depositing a check. Positive experiences powered by digital offerings is crucial.

That best-class experience can be created by leveraging customer data for targeted outreach of only the most relevant offers for each customer, and by customizable payment processing offerings to deliver more personalized experiences. Above all, what can create positively perceived digital financial service experiences are those which can be smoothly embedded in the customer’s lifestyle, such as mobile check deposit. With a customer-centric culture and digitally transformed processes to support all these efforts, the brand image, and customer loyalty of a given bank can be bolstered.

To conclude, while the trend toward digital transformation in banking is not exactly new, some banks, particularly smaller, regionally-focused organizations have historically been more reserved in undertaking these efforts because of the costs that can be involved, siloed operations between branches and other business units, and security concerns. But now, digital transformation has become a business imperative due to evolving customer preferences.

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Peter Bohjalian
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Industry Solutions

Challenges, Trends, and Solutions in Global Payments

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Security, efficiency, visibility and operational control over payments are critical to effective business management. Enterprises require an integrated platform that supports internal processes to produce instant, useable analyses and pricing trend forecasts for our organizations.

Further, in today’s increasingly globalized business environment, the need for compliant and secure platforms to manage international payments becomes more urgent. But what keeps enterprises from reaching this unified, platform-based approach to processing global payments?  Often, fragmented back offices and mono-payment engines (whether those engines are housed internally or at the bank) lead to complexity, a lack of automation and significant operational risk. The innovation, automation, and analytical capability that savvy treasury and finance professionals demand today requires a different approach.

Payment gateways can normalize, analyze, and truly enable the payment. Global payment gateways are designed to simplify consolidation of domestic payment multi-media (checks, cash reporting, ACH, wires, card) and also multi-national payments, which of course are subject to currency reconciliations, exchange rates, and other variables.

Stakeholders evaluating potential platforms should look for a solution that checks each item off the list below effectively:

  • Reduced Costs
  • Improved information management
  • Real-time reporting and analytics
  • Improved risk management
  • Bank agnostic strategic payment independence
  • Increased control, compliance & governance

An optimally efficient payment gateway must be the main, centralized “hub” that enables straight-through processing (STP) for accuracy, real-time information availability, and improved risk management. This means integration with the financial processes like accounts receivable and payable (AR & AP). By leveraging such an approach, organizations with disparate payment methods and distributed operations can lower routing costs and achieve higher data security for cleaner posting.

Enterprises that take such an approach instantly distribute payment messaging to the accountable party in their organization. Other key features can include multi-channel payment capabilities, invoice consolidating, process automation for presentment, and accurate, real-time cross-border currency conversion. As mentioned, some of these online, true “payment hub” platforms can integrate with current company operations.  Because of their cloud-based, online nature, the gateway provider can offer real-time support, an inventory of best practices, and easy-to-update approaches.

Utilities and insurance companies have been among the first to reap the benefits of implementing a payment gateway/payment hub. The proof that their efforts and the upfront costs are paying off, is a look at their “before and after” payment flows, as well as reviewing their unit costs in processing payments. EVERY project has a winning ROI, and thus, now is time for the entire finance, treasury and payment industry to leverage this experience.

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Peter Bohjalian
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Industry Solutions

People Behind Our Technology: Tydus Mathis

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Sitting Down with Tydus Mathis: Enterprise Operations Director

What is your position?

Enterprise Operations Director

What is your background, what brought you to Exela?

My background was in banking responsible for Mail, Transportation and Print. I started my career with Bank of America in 1981, and in 1993 I switched jerseys and joined the team.

Describe yourself in five works or less.

  • Dedicated – (38 years in the Financial Industry)
  • Humbled – (By the opportunities the company has afforded to me and my family)
  • Coach – (Love to develop individuals and teams and celebrate their growth)
  • Innovative – (Creative, always thinking. I use my 45-minute commute to envision opportunities that will benefit my client and our Organization)
  • Successful – (By surrounding myself with people smarter than me)

What is an example of something “innovative” you have accomplished – at Exela or elsewhere?

Taking a platform that is already successful and leveraging it into new business opportunities. For example, we have a great track record in the Mail and Copy space with a particular customer, as well as a great rapport with them. Using those strengths, we organically grew our business by way of Transportation Services, Address Remediation and Lockbox. These new business opportunities would not have been possible without key leaders protecting the base business; National Directors Renee Sanders and Justin Knight, Enterprise Ops Manager Eny Alfonso and the entire Management and staff within Mail and Copy Services.

What industry trends (outlook) do you see?

Great question, Risk is always a big concern. Companies are starting to invest in this area. We have a great opportunity to help protect our clients with a secure mail solution, Digital Mail and Intelligent Lockers.

How are you and/or Exela addressing them?

We address these with our clients using several vehicles: through our 1 on 1’s, Strategy calls, and QBR’s. Once a year we would establish an Innovation Day which showcases all of our capabilities.

Learn more from Exela:

Join us for Exela’s People Behind Our Technology series, a new initiative that highlights both our Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) and proprietary technology solutions. Our SMEs answer a series of questions that help provide insight into the present and future of Exela’s suite of solutions, leveraging their hands-on experience to demonstrate value. Stay tuned for more, and continue to visit the Exela website to see the full list of our People Behind Our Technology Q&A blogs.

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Tydus Mathis
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Industry Solutions

Exela’s Cisco Liquido on How the Single-Vendor Model Mitigates the Dreaded “Document Sprawl”

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“As banks scramble to meet consumers’ changing banking expectations, they struggle with legacy system integration,” writes Cisco Liquido on June 10, 2019 in the ABA Banking Journal. “Vendors are added one at a time, one bank acquires another, new systems are tacked on to old ones to address evolving problems, and the result can be a mess of disconnected systems, redundant processes and excessive documentation.”

Cisco Liquido is Exela’s Vice President for Business Strategies, and he understands the pain points that challenge banks as they grow and transform to meet consumers’ expectations. Read on as he talks about how poorly designed systems integrations lead to “document sprawl,” with all its redundancies, inefficiencies, and risks, and then proposes a methodology for avoiding the problem in the first place. For more of Cisco’s incisive thought leadership, check out this piece on

Read the rest of the article here.

For more on the latest banking thought leadership, check out the ABA Banking Journal.

For more up-to-the-minute Exela news, bookmark the Exela Blog. To learn more about Exela’s rapidly deployable business process automation solutions, check out our Solutions page.

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Lauren Cahn
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4 Factors Financial Services Organizations Should Consider as Brexit Looms (or not?)

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The possible exit of the United Kingdom (UK) from the European Union (EU), or “Brexit” as it’s come to be known, presents uncertainties for all UK-based organizations, starting with the fact that no one knows what the precise terms of Brexit will be—or even if it’s actually going to happen.

If only we had a crystal ball.

But not knowing what lays ahead doesn’t preclude planning ahead. In fact, for UK-based financial services organizations, particularly those providing services in the EU, the existence of multiple possible outcomes might actually be viewed as an opportunity to re-examine current business models to come up with innovative strategies to make the most of whatever the actual outcome turns out to be.

Here at Exela, in connection with providing continued seamless service to our UK-based financial services customers no matter what the outcome, we’ve been contemplating the following factors, which we’re happy to share:

The power of the pivot

In 2016, the British electorate voted that the UK should exit from the EU. Soon after, Prime Minister Theresa May announced the exit process would begin no later than the first quarter of 2017. However, the PM’s announcement was met with immediate opposition, leading to an extension of the exit date to March 29, 2019. Shortly before that date arrived, the date was extended twice more to account for political disagreement over exactly how Brexit would happen:

  • Would it be precisely as it had been envisioned by PM May?
  • Or was there room for compromise (also known as “Soft Brexit”)?
  • Or perhaps agreement required going even further than May had envisioned in severing ties with the EU (“Hard Brexit”)?

The current date set for Brexit is October 31, 2019. However, in mid-May, Brexit discussions broke down, leading PM May’s resignation announcement. Will the date slip further? Will Brexit happen? If so, how?

Only one thing seems clear at this moment, which is that if and when Brexit is finalized, it will be on short notice (no more than three months, and possibly quite a bit less). Accordingly, being prepared requires “planned agility” with the ability to pivot easily and seamlessly. To cultivate such agility, it’s not a bad idea to consider assembling a Brexit leadership team that meets and reports to the CEO on a regular basis (e.g., weekly, or perhaps often as the calendar draws closer to the current Brexit date). Such team would ideally be comprised of key stakeholders.

The relocation equation

One of the major challenges for UK-based financial organizations is that Brexit may mean an end to the current “passporting system,” which enables all EU firms to trade freely with one another, with minimal authorization. If that’s the case, then UK-based financial organizations will suddenly be subject to an array of newly applicable regulatory requirements…unless they relocate, in whole or in part, to a location within the EU.

The “relocation equation” is a complicated moving target, factoring in, among other things:

  • How much of the business is affected by newly applicable regulatory requirements?
  • Is it possible to relocate some but not all of the business?
  • What are the costs associated with relocation (including loss of human capital, time needed for new recruiting, etc.)?
  • What is the availability of appropriate premises in alternate locations?

Workforce impact

In the event of Brexit, the following considerations may come into play and should be taken into account at the planning level now:

  • Whether and which employees have EU passports
  • Willingness of non-EU-passport-holding employees to register as EU citizens
  • Workforce sentiment regarding relocation.
  • New qualifications, trainings, and certifications that relocation necessitates.

Data security

Currently, data security is governed by the EU’s General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR). The UK has committed to adopting an equivalent set of regulations in the event of Brexit, as well as a fail-safe sort of provisions acknowledging that companies in compliance under the EU are presumptively in compliance with the UK equivalent. But while this allows for the continued flow of personal data from the UK to the EU, it doesn’t take into account the flow of data from the EU to the UK, with respect to which new regulations are anticipated, along with new reporting requirements.

***

Although it’s impossible to predict exactly how Brexit will unfold, strategic planning must continue for financial services organisations, particularly those based in the UK and performing services throughout the EU. The absence of a clear end-game does not preclude strategic planning, but rather requires the consideration of a variety of factors, some of which we’ve identified here, and all of which Exela, as a provider of services to financial services organizations throughout the world, is taking into account in its own contingency planning.

You can learn more about here about how Exela’s Banking & Financial Services Suite of solutions can streamline your financial institution’s compliance processes—from time-consuming, labor-intensive, and error-prone to time-saving, efficient, and cost-saving. Embracing complexity, delivering simplicity. It’s what we do at Exela.

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Martin Edwards and Lauren Cahn
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Industry Solutions

7 Top-Notch Team-Building Tips from Proven Team Leaders

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Exela’s Chief Executive, Ron Cogburn, loves telling a good story, especially one with a useful lesson, and when he does, the members of #TeamExela (all 22,000 of us) take notes. Of course, we aren’t the only ones. At the beginning of this year’s baseball season, Ron wowed Forbes readers by placing predictive analytics squarely into the glove pocket of baseball manager Billy Beane’s transformation of the baseball business back in the late 1990s. Now, Ron is at it again, weighing in with other members of the Forbes Technology Council, on the best and most effective team-building techniques.

Ensuring your team is working as a cohesive unit takes real management skill, the Council notes at the outset, but the “range of personalities,” and “varying work and communications styles” often presents challenges. So how do talented team leaders bring their team members together for the best and most effective collaboration? You can read the full story here, but I happen to have the inside scoop on how some of Exela’s team leaders have brought to bear some of the most unique and unexpected strategies into building their top-notch teams. I’m sharing the highlights here, beginning with Ron’s team-building tip.

  • Ron Cogburn—CEO of Exela Technologies
    “This will sound silly to the stuffier side of the business community, but in my company, we hug. There is no faster way to build a relationship of trust and a feeling of unity within a team than to have a little physical, but professional, contact between team members when greeting each other or saying goodbye. Even the most misanthropic people tend to feel some camaraderie with the people they hug.”
  • Eliza Leonardis – Director, Marketing and Communications at Exela Technologies
    "Get to know your team on a personal level. Taking the time to get to know one another as people enables authentic collaboration. It's almost like we can finish one another's sentences, and that just might be the secret sauce for moving as quickly as our jobs require, which is basically warp speed."
    Note: As one of Eliza's team members, I can completely vouch for that. My first week onboard at Exela involved not only a flurry of one-on-one getting-to-know-you meetings but also a team dinner at a local tapas place. There’ve been more team dinners as others have on-boarded, and I look forward to many more as we grow in force.
  • Jeff Gershowitz, General Counsel of Exela Technologies
    “We have weekly phone calls with the entire legal team, which is geographically spread out. As part of the call, members are welcome to offer sincere kudos to other team members— thanking them for contributions, their dedication, and their accomplishments.” And guess what? They always do. And it’s been proving highly effective at boosting team identity and empathy.
    In addition, Exela’s Deputy General Counsel, Erik Mengwall, clued me on Jeff’s now-famous “morning walks.” “Every morning, I try to personally walk by everyone’s office to say hello, check in, see how things are going.” As a result of the “morning walks,” Jeff’s team is uniquely “checked in” with one another. Every team has issues from time to time, but those issues never have a chance to fester with Jeff’s approach.
  • Carlos Mallen, Senior Vice President Human Resources for Exela (Americas and Europe)
    “Every day Exela leaders from across the globe focus on keeping their teams together. Whether it's going to lunch together, playing on a company sports teams with each other, or just coming together for a summer picnic or barbeque with coworkers, or a cake to celebrate a new hire or major service anniversary, the idea is the same - have fun and get to know each other. The better we know each other and the more we train ourselves to have fun at work, the easier it will be for our teams to band together and work through the tougher times like a crazy deliverable or a truly complex problem we need to make ridiculously simple in a high trust environment. It's these little things that make us successful... go team!”
  • John Garippa, SVP Banking and Financial Services at Exela
    John’s “cross-pollination” approach begins with the rather brave acknowledgement that to the extent every team member has unique strengths, they also can benefit from the strengths of others on the team. John leverages the diversity of strengths into synergies, and his team members understand the team is strong because of those synergies. Of his unique “no I in Team,” approach, John says the end game is that “the whole team value is greater than the sum of its parts.”
    Here’s where you can learn more about Exela’s suite of banking and financial services solutions.
  • Charlene Hickman, Manager – Proposal Development at Exela
    Charlene, who manages and coordinates the proposals Exela creates for its customers and potential customers, including those responding to RFPs, has the challenging task of managing a single team of proposal writers who are located in disparate locations around the world. To keep the team operating as a team, Charlene likes to staff projects with pairs of writers from disparate locations. For example, she will pair an India-based writer with a Stamford, Connecticut-based writer. “This pairing fosters idea sharing, collaboration, and team building, as well as provide ‘follow the sun’ support to the sales community,” Charlene explains.

For more up-to-the-minute Exela news, including more our thought leaders, stay tuned to the Exela Blog. To learn more about Exela’s rapidly deployable business process automation solutions, check out our Solutions page.

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Lauren Cahn
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Banking and financial services suite

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