The global economy is undergoing a huge transition – and the financial services industry is no different. Where huge conglomerates are being challenged by a generation who are using financial services differently, where the payment space is becoming more immediate, on-demand, mobile, organisations are very quickly looking to independent consultants like Sylvia to help them adapt to a new way of working and transform their organisations to become more agile and ready for change.
Sylvia shares her thoughts on independent consulting within the Financial Services marketplace.
“I’ve always loved project-based work. There’s nothing more satisfying than helping a client solve a complex issue or move past a business hurdle,” she tells me. Sylvia has worked in the management consulting industry for over 10 years, specialising in the Financial Services space for most of her career. Her career has seen her work with leading financial and consulting institutions like Santander, Accenture, The Hackett Group and Ernst & Young, to name just a few. Although Sylvia’s extensive expertise includes having worked with market verticals such as the banking, insurance and capital markets, her career focus has led her to concentrate on strategy and business case development and deliver solutions for her clients who are and have been challenged by business transformation and the changing market variables they experience – putting them under pressure to keep up, innovate and transform.
Biggest Challenge to Organisations in the Financial Space
“I think the biggest challenge facing many organisations in the Financial Service sector is identifying and understanding what their biggest competitive threat is,” she tells me. “Organisations know that they need to adapt and embrace newer technology and process, to keep up with an evolving market and client-base, but many simply don’t understand what that threat is. They want to experiment with newer technologies, but because they don’t understand the full picture, and what deployment of the new technology will look like, they risk missing out. Many don’t have the necessary resource or capacity to build up a valid use-case, and therefore, will never see a true ROI on their investment. We can talk about AI and machine-learning, but if you don’t have a solid use-case and ROI, you may never actually get there.”
Sylvia shares another common challenge experienced by organisations in the Financial Services industry. “Each firm has a history of how they deploy operations and new technology. But very few have ever taken a wholesale look at their business model and business plan. Many simply don’t take the time to take a step back and look at things that need to be reconsidered before moving forward onto the next step within their strategy. For some, re-evaluation of their strategy may mean that they need to re-invest in newer technology in order for their strategy to work, and for others, it may simply mean that they may need to deploy incremental changes which are not as critical as initially thought. Institutions who currently act as intermediaries would need to assess the longevity of their business structure in a changing industry – and ascertain whether that business model will still be the same in the future,” she adds.
A changing buyer market forcing the hand of business transformation.
“I do see a huge change in the way that generations are using financial services differently,” she says. “Of course it depends on where in the world you are, and how consumers view your business. In the insurance market alone – there is a trend towards an insure on-demand model where consumers are only insuring what is needed. The entire industry is now being driven by a changing consumer market, which, in itself, can either be quick to adapt, or very slow to adapt. Organisations need to be really close to what their consumers are doing to affect their own change management processes internally.”
And it’s not only the consumer market behaviour that is changing. Sylvia tells me that the B2B payment space is also facing a period of change, and yet there are still organisations who are simply not taking the time to get to know their true customer experience deeply.
So why independent talent, and why Sylvia?
Many of the larger organisations have developed their own in-house talent, and may simply need independent talent to augment and leverage their own teams. They know what they want, and have become sophisticated in articulating their exact project needs. These organisations recognise that independent talent brings niche expertise and topic knowledge. Sylvia is just that. She brings industry know-how with an independent and unbiased approach. She is transparent in her communication and isn’t afraid to acknowledge if a process isn’t working. She connects with her clients on a personable basis and, knowing that she herself represents disruption, quickly works to forming relationships and developing trust with those she works with. She is collaborative and always sets out to achieve what her clients ask her to do.
If you’re looking for talent that can help your organisation transform according to your buyer and client behaviour, then you need to work with someone like Sylvia. Speak to Talmix today.
About the Author
Katy is an independent marketing consultant and founded Fresh Brew Marketing out of her love for the cuppa. A seasoned marketer, Katy writes for several global publications and provides outsourced marketing services to businesses throughout the UK. She is a keen geocacher and rates running around in city centres dressed in Christmas lights as one of her most successful Social Media campaigns to date.More Content by Katy Roberts