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Three Steps to Propel Process Automation at Financial Services Firms


North American financial services organizations are struggling to implement automation initiatives due to a lack of strategic focus, the absence of business unit involvement and limited expertise. Here are three ways firms can overcome these obstacles and jumpstart their automation initiatives.

Our recent study of 302 executives from fi­nancial services fi­rms throughout North America sheds light on the state of their business process automation efforts. For example:

  • Most respondents agree that automation is critical to their business over the long term.

  • Automation initiatives still appear to be in their infancy; both robotic process automation (RPA) and cognitive automation remain on a slow but steady climb.

  • Automation initiatives are under-resourced, don’t fully address security concerns and regulatory mandates, and lack a post-deployment bot roadmap.

  • Roughly half of respondents confess a lack of sufficient internal expertise.

  • A lack of strategic focus is evident due in part to the absence of enterprise-wide approaches built around automation centers of excellence (CoE).

  • Automation initiatives are steered primarily by IT, which means that they are treated as a technology-centric effort. Many respondents are struggling to gain business unit involvement and process change expertise, despite business leaders’ higher levels of optimism for automation benefits vis-à-vis IT leaders.

  • On the whole, there appears to be limited realization of automation’s benefits; less than one-tenth of respondents identify themselves as benefi­ciaries.

  • Among the top adoption challenges are use case determination and strategy development and deployment.

Survey Findings At-A-Glance

The information graphic showcases the extensive survey findings at a high level:

  • Four key observations from our 302 survey respondents.

  • Three steps to help firms jumpstart their business process automation efforts.

To learn more, read our whitepaper “Financial Services Automation: Taking Off The Training Wheels,” visit the Banking & Financial Services and Intelligent Process Automation sections of our website, or contact us.

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