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Avi Ghosh, Head of Strategic Marketing & Communications, SIX Securities Services 

‘Building for the future’ – one of the key themes for Sibos in Toronto this year – has triggered a flurry of activity in the form of panel discussions, debates and presentations focusing on how financial institutions are creating solutions fit for the future. Perhaps the hottest topic in this regard at Sibos this year so far has been Artificial Intelligence (AI).

In a panel session with participants from Morgan Stanley, Accenture, Microsoft and others, looking at how middle and back office can make use of AI, 63% of the audience said that they had not yet begun working with the technology. For an audience made up of at least 150 people, all gathered at an event focused on the future, it was a pretty astounding statistic to hear. This highlighted that there is clearly a lot of “talking the talk”, yet not a lot of “walking the walk” going on.

To be fair to that 63%, AI is a scary and complex landscape and the questions abound: How can I implement this technology? Is AI just chatbots? How can I find the technology-savvy talent to build these solutions? And could it put my staff out of jobs? These are just some of the questions covered in various panels – a snapshot of the concerns that play on the minds of financial institutions.

What is clear is that we cannot sit around and do nothing, because 2020 is fast approaching and by that time, 80% of financial institutions claim that they want to have implemented a chatbot function – one of the most talked about AI solutions.

So it was with great excitement that Nino Ciganovic, Head of Middle Office and Customer Support, announced the impending launch of SIX Securities Services’ chatbot, Gianna. Coming to SIX Securities Services’ clients in Q1 of 2018, clients will be able to talk directly to this Gianna to solve varying queries. For example, a client could ask, “how many positions do I hold?” for which Gianna would be able to provide the answer, creating a natural – voice-activated – interaction between the two.

As an organisation, SIX Securities Services is dedicated to creating solutions that bring real value to our clients. It just so happens that in today’s age, part of that value is giving them the information they want, quickly and accurately. Today, with advances in technology, that information can be delivered via a chatbot, which then inevitably frees up human resource to focus on tasks dedicated to growing the business.

In the words of Nino, “you can absolutely count on chatbots talking to our clients” and with that in mind, we look forward to welcoming Gianna to our team in 2018!