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  • Blog Post: The Bank Branch of the Future – Microsoft at BAI 2011

    Bankers at BAI this year seem to agree that bricks and mortar banking is here to stay, despite the growth in digital channels. But the role of the branch would be very different and more enabled by technology. What the bank branch of the future might look like is very much the theme of the Microsoft...
  • Blog Post: The Analytic Enterprise

    Why do some banks perform so much better than others? There are many factors, but a lot has to do with the way they manage, harvest, analyze and disseminate information. Banks need information more than ever, in particular customer information. As a result, there has been a huge growth in the demand...
  • Blog Post: Mastering Innovation in a World of Complexity

    A 1994 ground breaking paper on product development suggested that there were two kinds of product development - a traditional analytical one moving through defined stages from the abstract to the specific as a problem solving process and another based on interpretive and continuous dialogue. [i] ...
  • Blog Post: Digital Signature in the Branch of the Future

    We are all familiar with digital signature in the retail environment, even in insurance. A number of leading banks have begun to adopt the process, but in financial services the technology of digital signature is still in its infancy. Whether we are opening a bank or brokerage account or applying...
  • Blog Post: Increasing Marketing ROI – the importance of uplift

    In today's competitive markets, it's all about focus - reaching the customers that deliver the best return for the least cost. But traditional marketing programs are often more about coverage than focus. The secret lies in understanding the shape of a curve. Analysts have long been familiar with...
  • Blog Post: Slates in Financial Services – Changing the Conversation

    The interest in Apple’s iPad amongst financial services business leaders creates a significant problem and opportunity for their IT staffs. Lines of Business executives not only want to connect their iPads to the corporate network, but they want to start delivering enterprise business solutions...
  • Blog Post: Migrating Financial Services Applications to the Azure Public Cloud

    Our Microsoft finserv team is seeing a major uptick in financial services firms and partners looking to leverage Microsoft Azure public cloud offering. Windows Azure and the cloud offer a paradigm shift in computing where a company can outsource all aspects of running their software except for their...
  • Blog Post: Secrets of Successful CRM – sharing best practices from the field

    The banking industry is really focused on organic growth this year and this is reflected in an enormous interest in customer relationship management systems - CRM. But while there are many examples of satisfied CRM customers, there are also some CRM implementations that haven't met expectations. On...
  • Blog Post: Real Time Risk Management at the Touch of a Button - the challenge of managing 'big data'

    New regulation, more frequent risk scenarios, faster trade flows and higher volumes are accelerating data velocities. Current risk systems need new architectures to scale. Systems that have previously been able to deliver only in hours and days must now capture, aggregate and report accurate accounts...
  • Blog Post: Choosing a Cloud Provider – towards a structured approach

    Cloud computing provides a compelling option for Financial institutions (FIs) looking for more flexibility in deploying technology and managing costs. There is a wealth of cloud solutions available in the market today, and some major providers, but how does an FI choose between one provider and another...
  • Blog Post: What’s Your Story – selling your idea successfully

    So we have our idea, but how do we tell the world about it? I have seen many presentations by companies and afterwards often ask myself 'what exactly do you do again?' Most presentations are full of facts and figures and slides that would thrill MOMA, but few tell a convincing story. RFPs don...
  • Blog Post: Creating a Culture of Innovation

    Many companies aspire to innovate, but few of them do it well. There are many reasons why, but chief amongst them is the absence of an effective culture of innovation. Creating such a culture isn't easy and can involve many changes to the DNA of the firm. Leadership is clearly a major factor. Innovation...
  • Blog Post: The Future of .NET and Interoperability in Banking

    We are rapidly moving towards a more open environment when it comes to technology. A question that often comes up is why aren't .NET and Java interoperable? Well in fact they are. For example: Both Java and .NET run on Azure Both Java and. NET run on Windows Java and .NET are interoperable...
  • Blog Post: Kinecting Financial Services: Moving the relationship to the living room

    I told my wife the Xbox and Kinect console were for the children. Sunday after Christmas I found her organizing a bowling league! My wife is not a gamer. However, she claims that Galaga was "her game" back in the day. What I found astounding was her experience with the Kinect console and her desire...
  • Blog Post: Taking Control of our Data and our Destiny

    Back in October 1996, Wired Magazine published Thomas Bass's now famous interview with Citibank and Citicorp's former head Walter Wriston, famous for his observation that information about money was almost as important as money itself. That insight led to massive technology investments by the then...
  • Blog Post: The Role of Ecosystems in Driving Innovation

    An ecosystem in nature is a biological community composed of groups of organisms together with the non-living elements they interact with; air, soil, water, and sunlight. These organisms depend on each other for their survival and development. Ecosystems change with their environment. Nature is a...
  • Blog Post: What's Your Idea - building a grass roots innovation pipeline

    Ideas come from many places. Employees and customers are an obvious source. But how can we create a process to ensure that great ideas are constantly bubbling up and moving our business forward? One approach favored by many large corporations is to create a grass roots innovation pipeline (GIR) and...
  • Blog Post: Innovation - anticipating the forces of change

    In a previous blog - the Gentle Art of Innovation - we implied that innovation was a process - more science than art. But we carefully left out the tough bit, coming up with the idea itself. For many of us, this is the biggest challenge so a framework may help. Innovation is about making life, easier...
  • Blog Post: Financial Reform - the impact on technology

    Many financial firms see meeting compliance as one of their biggest challenges for 2011. Dodd-Frank is arguably the most comprehensive program of financial reform since the Depression era, embracing areas from interchange fees to derivatives. MiFID II and Basel III just add to the mix. While many...
  • Blog Post: Me and My Avatar

    A friend of mine - a very senior banker - just flew in from Sydney to stay with us. As we talked about this and that it transpired that he didn't know what an avatar was. This was an astonishing admission and I quickly reached for my Windows Phone 7 to show him my avatar on Xbox Live. After seeing it...
  • Blog Post: Cloud computing – the invisible revolution

    Wherever we look today we see new leaps in technology. Many of them are very visible, such as smartphones, slates and social networking. But many depend on an invisible game changing technology - cloud computing. Search, downloading and sharing photos, accessing internet TV and mobile applications...
  • Blog Post: The Power of One – the new social marketplace

    Egypt's revolution exploded when the internet was cut off. Few governments have cut off access entirely; Myanmar did so in 2007, as did Nepal two years earlier. At least 40 countries filter specific internet sites or services. China does by prohibiting access to some foreign new services. So Egypt...
  • Blog Post: The Gentle Art of Innovation

    Markets are changing faster than ever and disruption is a growing challenge for banks. An article from CNN Money predicts that credit cards may soon be as outdated as vinyl records. Creative destruction is hard to resist. While innovation may be the answer, it's not an easy option. We live in a world...
  • Blog Post: T- commerce - the Big Screen Makes a Comeback

    My early memories of TV involved black and white screens and rabbit ear antennae. Three main TV networks - NBC, CBS and ABC - let advertisers reach 90 percent of U.S. audiences. With the advent of cable, channels proliferated and audiences fragmented. Later, VCRs and TiVo gave viewers more control over...
  • Blog Post: Avatars, Algorithms and Attention Spans - Voyages Across the Internet

    It's 7.30 am Friday morning. In the office snatching moments between messages. A cup of Joe jumpstarts me. I decide to trip across the internet. I take my avatar with me. I hate to dress up and travel alone. Yes, I have my own avatar, custom built on the Xbox website. It looks just like me, young...
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