Auckland-headquartered financial technology consulting and implementation firm, Mosaic, has added half a dozen staff over the last few months as the digital transformation trend sweeps over the NZ industry.
Myles Allan, founding partner of the firm officially known as Mosaic Financial Services Infrastructure, said businesses across the sector were under pressure to update their technology to cope with new ‘disruptor’ entrants, regulatory demands and changing consumer preferences.
“In particular, we’re seeing a huge interest from financial services firms looking to synch their risk and compliance systems with the real-time expectations of customers,” Allan said. “There’s also a growing realisation from incumbent businesses – including insurers, banks and fund managers – that they need to respond to the threats and opportunities posed by advances in ‘fintech’ and ‘regtech’ technology.”
To meet the growing demand, Mosaic has added four senior consultants to its Auckland team including: former Commonwealth Bank of Australia digital and business strategy transformation expert, Magdalena Andonoska;, wealth platform software specialist, Krista Huls; Erin Hutchings, previously leading regulatory and platform implementations for Hobson Wealth Partners; and, global financial services compliance specialists, Josie Easingwood – also arriving from Hobson.
Mosaic has also bolstered its presence in Wellington with the engagement of experienced insurance business transformation consultant, Stephen Ladanyi, who will also drive expansion of the local office; and, Mathieu Hemery, who brings key front office systems implementation skills honed in organisations such as the RBS and Barclays Capital.
“We will continue to build the team next year in response to the considerable pipeline of opportunities right across the value chain in funds management, wealth, insurance and banking regulation, in particular,” Allan said.
He said a number of forces had converged to accelerate technological change for all participants in the financial services industry.
As well as ongoing improvements in underlying software and technology – including the growth of APIs (or application program interface), blockchain and machine learning – Allan said the industry was facing unprecedented regulatory attention and rapidly-evolving consumer expectations.
“For example, the NZ regulators banking ‘culture and conduct’ report published in November – and a similar life insurance investigation due next year – is prompting institutions to redesign a raft of processes,” he said. “And consumers today expect to see their financial services delivered in an open and transparent way in real-time, preferably via mobile devices.”
Allan said the arrival of robo-advice in NZ this year also signaled a potential challenge to the status quo – albeit that the likely outcome would see wealth firms offer ‘hybrid’ models as outlined in a 2017 Mosaic white paper.
“With change coming from many directions, NZ financial services firms are all looking to technology to future-proof their businesses,” he said. “That doesn’t necessarily mean they have to start everything from scratch – existing systems can be adapted and partnering options can be key enabler in climbing the technology curve – but it does involve them making sure their technology is fit-for-purpose as the world upgrades.”