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WHY PERFORMANCE DATA WILL MAKE OR BREAK THE HYBRID WORKING MODEL

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Managers now require real-time data to boost productivity and prioritise employee wellbeing. 

While questions linger as to what the ideal working structure should look like, there can be no doubt that the future of work is hybrid. The pandemic has radically altered perceptions of what businesses can or can’t achieve online, valid for employers and employees alike.

According to ActiveOps, a leading provider of digital operations management solutions, the ability to provide this flexibility is fast becoming a matter of survival for organisations as the war for (remote) talent intensifies. Indeed, with research revealing that over 40 percent of the global workforce is considering leaving their employer this year, companies are under increasing pressure to introduce hybrid working to remain attractive as an employer – while at the same time achieving high levels of productivity and performance as economies recover.

Richard Jeffery, Group CEO, ActiveOps, stated: “At least in the short term, one of the significant challenges that organisations are facing is the combined effects of burnout, digital fatigue, and poor mental health. Countless studies point to dangerously high levels of burnout and stress, with employees reporting that they are feeling more and more disconnected from managers and colleagues.

“The good news is that many leaders are recognising that a successful hybrid workplace will require a renewed focus on building and maintaining a strong and supportive company culture – while placing new tools, methods, and metrics in place that prioritize both productivity and wellbeing.”

To make hybrid working a viable and long-term prospect, organisations must build a more robust and dynamic link between employee productivity, performance, and wellbeing. In creating this link, leaders will also have to redefine what productivity means in a hybrid world – recognising that volumes of work or hours logged can no longer be seen as productivity and be measured as such.

“Employers will also need to provide employees with new tools, information, and methods that empower them to succeed. Given the reduced in-person interactions and drastically reduced managerial visibility daily, these tools will need to take their cue from real-time and historical employee data. Once the company has established this data flow, the next step will be to overlay the employee data with operational and change management expertise to provide the most value to employees and to the organisation itself,” continued Jeffery.

Today, many companies are drawing their data from traditional employee productivity monitoring (EPM) technology – and attempting to make operational decisions based on an inadequate view of what is truly going on. Moreover, when deploying this technology, employers must strike a delicate balance between employee surveillance and supportive EPM.

Fortunately, the emergence of ethical EPM (paired with advanced technology) places far less emphasis on surveillance – seeking instead to empower employees with information that helps them be more focused and intentional in their work.

“In short, ethical and effective EPM turns employee behaviours into a measurable source of information by drawing on accurate, real-time data. This data shows employees, managers, and the organisation how an individual spends their screen time and how productive they’ve been so that they can adapt what isn’t working to be more intentional; not so they can punish those who aren’t working'” added Jeffery.

One of the significant challenges for companies looking to embrace ethical employee productivity monitoring and performance benchmarking is that few EPM tools can handle the various technical requirements for capturing thousands of employee workstations simultaneously.

“However, that’s exactly what an organisation now requires unveiling real insights and implement operational changes that promote both cultural and performance consistency in a hybrid world. Many leaders will also recognise that capturing data at the aggregate and individual levels in real-time can enable an organisation to uncover bigger, company-wide trends that can drive overall business efficiency. In a global business environment that is both highly competitive and relentlessly volatile, access to real-time performance data – or a lack of access to that data – will ultimately make or break organisations,” concluded Jeffery.

 

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FINTECH COMPANY PAYEN CHOOSES AQILLA FOR ITS LIMITLESS SCALABILITY AND SUPERIOR MULTI-CURRENCY FEATURES

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Payen is a fast-growing FinTech company that provides gateway Payment and FX services to online merchants. Having launched in 2010, the business has grown steadily, winning three UK high-growth awards in 2019 and now has an annual revenue of over £14 million. As a global payments company, Payen deals with huge volumes of complex multi-currency transactions on a daily basis. Their accounting system needs to be able to scale effortlessly to these volumes as well as handle the unique nuances of multi-currency and foreign exchange.

 

Payen’s vision is to provide innovative solutions with a personal touch. As such they’ve continuously improved their 100% proprietary technology to enhance the process at every step in the payment value chain. Most recently, this includes extending their global options for alternative payment methods, as well as offering business bank accounts and forex services. As a cloud-based service, Aqilla effortlessly scales to handle Payen’s growing number of currencies and transactions.

 

Global payment transactions involve numerous touchpoints. As a payment gateway, Payen sits in the middle of this process, but Aqilla has the flexibility to handle this. Payen also offers foreign exchange services, so multi-currency is key to their finance function. Aqilla features simple but sophisticated handling of multi-currency transactions with extensive multi-currency capabilities throughout its ledgers.

 

Hugh Scantlebury, Aqilla’s CEO and Founder, explains further: “Aqilla’s reporting system features an easy to use report editor and query builder that lets you create custom reports that can easily be extended across multiple companies and currencies. Aqilla’s API also allows it to connect to other business apps, which Payen plans to use in the future to consolidate reports for its two UK-based entities.”

 

Payen’s Head of Finance Hannah James endorses Aqilla as an adaptable and easy to use accounting solution to support Payen as it grows: “As a fast-growing business, we need lean processes that can scale. Aqilla has continued to deliver this, even as we’ve added more services, currencies, and transactions. We’ve had no issues with the volume of transactions, and Aqilla’s support team has always been prompt and helpful. On the whole, we don’t notice any problems because Aqilla just works. And we know it has the features and flexibility in place to keep up with our evolving requirements,” she explained.

 

Hannah continues: “Aqilla meets all of our reporting needs. I particularly find the ability to drill into accounting categories very useful, avoiding the need to manipulate data outside of the system, downloading it every time. I can see the detail I need through simple navigation. We hope to continue to build on the reporting capabilities in Aqilla by creating a more automated method of consolidation using Sharperlight, however, we already have a good level of business intelligence and the information is easy to extract.”

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NEW RESEARCH REVEALS KEY ROLE OF KYC COMPLIANCE IN DRIVING CUSTOMER LOYALTY, ADVOCACY AND NEW BUSINESS

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The impact of financial crime for institutions goes beyond crippling fines

 

A piece of original research conducted by RegTech Associates on behalf of PassFort, the SaaS RegTech provider, whose platform automates financial crime and compliance processes, has revealed that customers who reported a better than expected compliance onboarding experience in the last 12 months were much more likely to remain loyal, advocate for their brands and acquire more products than those whose experience was worse than expected. These results underline the importance of delivering outstanding service along the whole customer lifecycle.

The survey was conducted in July and August 2021 and addressed a representative sample of 500 UK financial services consumers who had acquired a new financial product in the past twelve months. Products had been acquired from a mix of high street banks, challenger banks, mobile and digital banks and building societies. Those who had a worse than expected compliance onboarding experience[1] were much more likely than their peers to believe their providers did little to protect them from financial crime[2]. They were also much more likely to underestimate the penalties facing providers, with one-third (32 percent) assuming they would get no more than a “slap on the wrist”[3].

Announced today to coincide with Donald Gillies’, CEO, PassFort, panel discussion at Money 20/20, the research highlights consumer attitudes towards their providers and the outcomes they drive, as well as digging more broadly into their perceptions of risk, their experiences of fraud and views on the current UK debate around digital identity.

Regulatory technology that supports know your customer (KYC) compliance in financial institutions has historically been viewed as a cost burden. However, the findings revealed today clearly show a positive trend for those providers who execute well. The case for business benefit or value-add can clearly be seen in the correlation between consumer attitudes towards positive compliance onboarding experiences and a likelihood to go on to purchase additional products.

 

In fact, as a result of their interactions, those customers who received a better than expected experience of compliance onboarding described themselves as:

  • more likely to recommend their provider (77 percent, which was more than double the rate of 32 percent for those whose experience had been worse than expected)
  • more likely to buy more products (60 percent, which was almost 3.0x the rate of 21 percent for those whose experience had been worse than expected)
  • less likely to make a complaint (50 percent, versus only 14 percent for those whose experience had been worse than expected)
  • less likely to switch providers (49 percent, more than 2.5x the rate of 18 percent for those whose experience had been worse than expected)

“The complex compliance landscape has been under even more pressure with the impact of the pandemic. There were more than 1,330 pieces of covid related regulation introduced by August 2020 alone. Couple this with the enforced financial pressures on consumers and a global increase in fraud and financial crime and we have to understand that the perceptions and demands of consumers have shifted,” said Dr Christine Bailey, CMO, PassFort. “The compliance onboarding process shouldn’t be seen as a cost burden to financial institutions. Instead, what this research starkly demonstrates is the importance of onboarding at the beginning of the customer lifecycle in terms of how it influences customer loyalty, advocacy and future buying decisions.”

Far from being an unseen element of the customer journey, KYC at onboarding can be a differentiator for financial institutions. As financial crime increasingly dominates our headlines, the public are becoming aware of the value and vulnerability of their digital identity. One of the many legacies of Covid is that consumers are demanding more from the organisations they engage with across the board and trust ranks highly on that list of expectations.

“A stand-out result from the survey is the clear connection between the ability of leaders to exceed the customer’s expectations of what their compliance journey should look like, and the positive outcomes that follow. For example, in 90 percent of cases, customers who received a better than expected compliance journey would describe their provider as “trustworthy”, while 88 percent would say their provider was “efficient”. In contrast, for those whose experiences undershot expectations, the figures drop sharply, to 64 percent and 39 percent respectively,” commented Rob Stubbs, Head of Research at RegTech Associates. “Despite many customers telling us their experience was ‘as expected’ it’s clearly important that providers don’t rest on their laurels.”

“Against this backdrop, firms cannot afford to view satisfactory delivery as being good enough. There is a very real opportunity for engaging valuable revenue streams and enhancing reputation for those who step up,” continued Dr Bailey. “The regulatory landscape is ever changing and incredibly complex, yet we still see an ad hoc approach to regulatory technology across the industry with many firms still relying on heavily manual processes.  In the same way we have seen marketing automation revolutionise the marketing function, it’s time to digitise compliance and streamline the entire customer journey.”

 

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