The Greek philosopher Heraclitus
once observed that no one can ever step into the same river twice. If these philosophers
tried to define how the financial industry works today, they might say that no bank
can ever step into the same technology stream twice.

Twenty-first century innovations, evolving standards and new business requirements keep the landscape fluid – and that’s without factoring in the perpetual challenge of regulatory changes. As you evaluate your institution’s digital strategic plan, consider opportunities to address both technology and compliance transformations with the same solution.

The investments your bank
makes in compliance technology will set the stage for how you operate today and
in the future. Are you working with a compliance partner who offers the same
solution that they did two, five or even 10 years ago? Consider the turnover in
consumer electronics in that same period.

Your compliance
partner’s reaction time is your bank’s reaction time. If your compliance
partner is not integrated with cloud-based systems, does not offer solutions
tailored for online banking and does not support an integrated data workflow,
then it isn’t likely they can position you for the next technology development,
either. If your institution is looking to change core providers, platform
providers or extend solutions through application programming interfaces, or
APIs, the limitations of a dated compliance solution will pose a multiplying effect
on the time and costs associated with these projects.

A compliance partner must also safeguard a bank’s data integrity. Digital data is the backbone of digital banking. You need a compliance partner who doesn’t store personally identifiable information or otherwise expose your institution to risks associated with data breaches. Your compliance data management solution needs to offer secured access tiers while supporting a single system of record.

The best partners know
that service is a two-sided coin: providing the support you need while minimizing
the support required for their solution. Your compliance partner must understand
your business challenges and offering a service model that connects bank staff
with legal and technology expertise to address implementation questions. Leading
compliance partners also understand that service isn’t just about having seasoned
professionals ready to answer questions. It’s also about offering a solution
that’s designed to deliver an efficient user experience, is easy to set up and
provides training resources that reach across teams and business footprints – minimizing
the need to make a support call. Intuitive technology interfaces and asynchronous
education delivery can serve as silent accelerators for strategic goals related
to digitize lending and deposit operations.

Compliance partners should value and respect a bank’s content control and incorporate configurability into their culture. Your products and terms belong to you. It’s the responsibility of a compliance partner to make sure that your transactions support the configurability needed to service customers. Banks can’t afford a compliance technology approach that restricts their ability to innovate products or permanently chains them to standard products, language or workarounds to achieve the output necessary to serve the customer. Executives can be confident that their banks can competitively adapt today and in the future when configurability is an essential component of their compliance solution.

A compliance partner’s ability to meet a bank’s needs depends on an active feedback loop. Partners never approach their relationship with firms as a once-and-done conversation because they understand that their solution will need to adjust as business demands evolve. Look for partners that cultivate opportunities to learn how they can grow their solution to meet your bank’s challenges.

Compliance solutions shouldn’t be thought of as siloed add-ons to a bank’s digital operations. The right compliance partner aligns their solution with a bank’s overall objectives and helps extend its business reach. Make sure that your compliance technology investment positions your bank for long-term return on investment.


Kevin Polinsky