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Some reflections from the Nordic Back Office Conference 2012

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Guest Blog Post by Nicklas Torlegård

About the author: Some call me a geek, I am just passionate for creating IT-solutions for the financial industry. I’ve a background as a business oriented system developer. I’ve contributed with both frontend applications as backoffice system. I hope that I can contribute with some new perspectives.

 

I attended the Nordic Back Office (http://www NULL.talentumevents NULL.se/events/leadingevents/nordic+back+office/a34273) Conference in Stockholm on Monday and Tuesday. My impression from the first day was that this event was only for geeks. Or to be more specific; how can you be excited over things like FATCA, EMIR, MiFID II, AIFMD, UICTS, T2S, Dodd-Frank and more? It covered a lot of new regulations, planned or decided, that will affect the capital market industry. In my mind there are two clear drivers for new regulations; one is to mitigate risk and the other one is to provide transparency and mobility.

The second day of the conference was more practical and easier to follow. It was more hands-on: Here are some examples of topics:

  • Why and how Swedbank made organizational changes in their back office operations
  • LEAN and  KAIZEN at Nordea
  • Increased volumes due to algo and high frequency trading

After a couple of hours of reflection my impression is: Everything is as it has always been; we live in an ever changing environment.

That’s fantastic – new opportunities for all! Banks and other financial institutions have to adapt to changes due to new regulations, not only in systems but also in business models. There are clearly room for niche players and there will be consolidations as well.

The other drivers for new business models are fragmentation, and new channels. Internet banking is established since long. Today we do our banking business using our phones and tablets. Will the app-industry provide new business models? Will new users, children and teenagers of today, have the same behaviour when using banking or financial apps as they have when using game apps? Yes, it’s already happening. All the regulations that we see today will clearly force us to define our processes further and to standardize, which will make it easier for both B2B and B2C communication.

 

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