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  • Insights
  • Thursday 3rd November 2022

The problem with automating workflows in financial services

Every business is on a mission to automate, particularly financial services firms who are constantly looking for ways to ‘do more with less’. 

By nature financial institutions are very complex and their workflows can span multiple desks, across geographies and externally to trading counterparties, clients and individuals. More importantly, there are stringent compliance and regulatory demands which mean that most actions - whether manual or automated – need to be auditable.  

There are countless examples of business-critical processes that are occurring hundreds of times a day - yet are still being done manually. For example, RFQ process - many businesses are still sending out prices on spreadsheets attached to emails to clients, then receiving multiple emails back with different prices which then need to be manually consolidated into one master spreadsheet. It’s fraught with risk, both from an infosec perspective and basic human error. Furthermore, let’s think about what happens when a trade is agreed – there are so many teams and processes involved in ensuring that the trade is compliant and accurately recorded.

The above is the perfect use case for automation, creating seamless workflows which handle the mundane yet important tasks. 

It’s not only about automation though, multistage approval capabilities are crucial, specifically in financial services where multiple teams need to collaborate and approve a single process. Multistage approvals need to be built into every workflow with a full audit trail of who has approved (or not) and when / where etc.

What solutions are available to solve these challenges?

There are many workflow tools on the market, off-the-shelf software and in-house development. Sadly it’s not that simple. The larger low code workflow solutions are built to serve multiple sectors and so you end up custom building workarounds to handle the complexities of financial services. The other problem you might have is that the support resources are generalists – they don’t understand in detail what you are trying to achieve – they might be masters of their technology stacks but they don’t understand your specific business needs. Not to mention the big-ticket invoices and sticky contractual requirements that are non-negotiable with large vendors. So, what about in-house build? Yes it can work, but you then have the burden of maintaining it for years to come, the cost of building it and I haven’t mentioned the severe skills shortage the industry is currently suffering from.

But it’s not all bad… (you knew that was coming). Our codeless workflow platform is designed and built by financial services experts. It supplies our clients with a self-service tool which can be used by business people as well as technical, to build workflows across the business. Whether it is trade workflows, client onboarding, compliance, data driven workflows etc, we understand the unique requirements our industry faces, and the platform has been built solely for that purpose. If you want to find out how you can automate your trade or regulatory processes then get in touch

With MDXT, it's easier than you think!