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What’s next for post-pandemic fintech innovation?

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What’s next for post-pandemic fintech innovation? 1

By Brannan Coady, CEO Netsells Group, CPO YourParkingSpace,

Even before 2020, FinTech was fundamentally transforming the way financial services operate. Established market players have been forced to step up their use of technology to keep pace with challenger banks and FinTech start-ups.

New market entrants are clearly following on of two strategies – they either aggregate existing services onto a unified digital platform, or break them down into niche digital products serving small, but well defined market segments.

This bundling and unbundling has become a familiar pattern of innovation across multiple industries ever since the .com boom.

However within the context of FinTech, there are unique ecosystem pressures that are driving new products and services. For anyone looking to work with or build a fintech business, these are the three trends I would take note of to drive my strategy in 2020:

Digital Transformation Will Be Non-Neogtiable

The abrupt move to digital during the first few months of 2020 came as the biggest shock to incumbents that relied heavily on outdated processes, multiple intermediaries and legacy systems.

For example, homebuyers in the UK at the beginning of the pandemic faced month long delays for mortgage approvals. This was blamed on the rise of homeworking, however delays also result from the fact that multiple parties interact with manual updates throughout the transaction lifecycle.

This is further exacerbated by the fact that risk appetites across the sector have been depressed, but assessing risk is still in many cases reliant on manual investigations by underwriters.

My feeling is that having had these issues exposed in such a painful manner, traditional banks will have a healthy, if not voracious, appetite for rapid technology implementation over the coming years. This matter will be even more pressing given the fact that most banks have several start-ups in their rear view mirror for each service in their portfolio.

We are already seeing a massive interest in the potential of Blockchain to streamline the home buying process, as well as the way financial institutions handle mortgages. If data can be held by multiple parties that is trusted, accurate and secure, process steps can be automated and reduce the complexity, time and cost for all parties.

I’m also very excited about the potential of AI to increase speed and further reduce risk through document analysis and intelligent decision making. It would be a shock if we do not see mass-adoption of multiple emerging technologies over the next few years.

Regulation Will Become a Driver of Innovation

As competition and innovation heats up, regulators will have to become part of the driving force behind new services and products.

There are two sides of the coin at play here, as of course regulators are in place to stop abuse or misuse, but they also have to become conscious of the potential for regulation to impede progress.

Brannan Coady

Brannan Coady

As new technologies are introduced, there is a clear opportunity to rethink how regulatory frameworks might actually support the development of new propositions by offering clear guidance to those looking to build in the FinTech space.

An example of this is the Payment Services Directive (PSD), which aims to encourage innovation in the payments industry and outlines the criteria and obligations for payment providers and users.

PSD2, in particular, forces providers to open up their data and services to third-parties which has been transformational for FinTechs and traditional banks alike, allowing for better customer outcomes and more streamlined internal processes.

The next phase of post-pandemic fintech innovation will require regulators to instill confidence in both consumers and those creating solutions.

Digital Payments Will Continue To Dominate

Despite its boring image, payments remains one of the hottest areas of fintech investment, with €55.6bn worth of exits since 2013.

Digital wallet services such as Apple Pay and Google Pay leverage well understood technologies such as near-field communication (NFC) technology and biometric authentication to make the consumer payments experience seamless and secure.

However there is more still to come from consumer-facing solutions, especially as the demand for mobile payments have skyrocketed dramatically over the last 6 months and shows no sign of slowing down.

We are starting to see solutions emerge that do away with card machines and hardware altogether, facilitating purely mobile to mobile transactions enabled by a mobile application installed on retailers’ and consumers’ devices.

Alongside consumer-facing propositions, we are also seeing an expanding desire for the payments ecosystem itself to be productised and opened up.

API-driven, banking-as-a-service platforms are using the opportunities provided by regulations such as PSD2 to enable payments by directly connecting the merchant and the bank, reducing the number of intermediaries and therefore costs.

This openness is also providing opportunities for collaboration between banks and fintechs and actually provides a new type of opportunity for incumbents with a large existing customer base. Banks now have the ability to become true platforms, bundling up and connecting services provided by a multitude of fintechs

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First of a kind Virtual Coffee Machine app with social meeting moments to support workforce wellbeing in a remote workplace

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First of a kind Virtual Coffee Machine app with social meeting moments to support workforce wellbeing in a remote workplace 2

Powell Software’s first in a series of wellbeing technology innovations help remote employees socially connect with colleagues and keep the workplace culture alive

As the third UK lockdown continues and many countries worldwide face severe restrictions, Powell Software, a global organisation creating digital solutions and tools for the digital workplace, has launched the first of its kind Virtual Coffee Machine, an application within Microsoft Teams to ensure employees stay better connected, positively engaged and take regular breaks while working from home.

With employee wellbeing at the top of the global workforce agenda for 2021, Powell’s Virtual Coffee Machine app positively connects employees through virtual chats to maintain a culture of togetherness, even when apart.

Replacing the absence of the in-person coffee catch up, HR can swiftly set up a Virtual Coffee Machine break within any Teams channel, encouraging employees to take regular short breaks while inspiring networking and socialising between colleagues.

Matthieu Silbermann, Chief Product Officer at Powell Software said: “The effects of the Pandemic have reshaped the Digital Workplace and research has found that three quarters of employers intend to shift some employees to remote work permanently. However, with one in five remote employees naming loneliness as their top complaint regarding work from home, reinforcing togetherness needs to be a top priority.”

Take a virtual coffee

HR can set up a Virtual Coffee Machine meeting within any Teams channel defining time, frequency and date, and number of people. The app then uses an algorithm that collects data from employees registered in Powell Teams, automatically comparing outlook calendars and generating meeting invites based on the criteria of the meeting. For example, if the Virtual Coffee Machine meeting criteria was set at a maximum of five people and ten people are available to join then two meeting invitations would be sent.

Virtual Coffee Machine consciously avoids one to one or full team meetings, focusing on creating intimate, short social breaks where employees can take time out to engage with colleagues in a positive digital space.  Colleagues can also ‘travel’ to differently located virtual offices across their organisation to meet colleagues for a coffee break in different virtual buildings.

Employees are unaware of who else will join the group until the event, to encourage different team members to meet, chat and get to know each other. The app automatically books an agenda and also suggests ice breakers like ‘what was the last film you saw or book’?

If a team member does not want to or cannot join a Virtual Coffee Meeting, they simply decline the meeting invitation.

Silbermann continues: “Powell Software is passionate about connecting employees to their organisation and to each other, ensuring that they have a positive and stimulating experience at work, every day. Remote workers need to be connected, they need to feel part of the company, the culture and feel able to socialise in the hybrid or remote workplace.

“Powell’s new Virtual Coffee Machine app is all about the employee. We all miss the little social moments at the office, whether they be at the coffee machine or the cold water fountain. Coffee Machine allows us to progressively see our workplaces positively come to life again in a virtual way, promoting connectivity, collaboration and employee wellbeing. It’s part of a bigger goal and series of initiatives to bring the virtual building to life.”

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Top 5 Ways To Lose Your Video Files

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Most Video Content Created in the Summer Months, Finds Veritas Research

There are lots of reasons why you can lose video files in your system or device. While some of these problems are avoidable, others are inevitable. Simply put, it is only a matter of time before the latter problems will be experienced. The major challenge is that most people don’t understand why their video files are either missing, damaged or deleted.

Are you amongst those mentioned above? Do you always ask why a video file can get lost, deleted or damaged? Don’t waste time to rack your brain on a such topic/matter. This is because you have come to the right place. This well-researched blog will provide you all the top reasons why you are losing your video files. Before thinking about which video recovery software to start using, it is recommended you know why files are getting lost in your system.

Power outage

This is a common problem that is responsible for loss of data. However, most people are yet to discover it. Have you ever noticed any situation whereby there is sudden power outage in your system? Simply put, your system suddenly shuts down. In such case, applications and other files (photos, videos, audios and doc) will be closed without any prior warning. The implication of this is that your video files are likely to get damaged.

Top 5 Ways To Lose Your Video Files 3

You may want to argue that systems come with batteries. Therefore, there will not be a problem of power shut down. This is not true in any way as power shut down can happen due to some reasons. It could even be that your system is malfunctioning. Even when your video files are not damaged through such incident, there is every chance that your hard drive will be adversely affected.

Faulty hard drive

If your hard drive is damaged due to one reason or another, there is every chance that your video files will be lost, damaged or deleted. Most of the cases related to data losses can be traced to malfunctioning hard drive. In case you don’t know, hard drives are very fragile. They can easily become faulty because of poor handling. If your hard drive crashes, it is recommended you find out what must have led to such problem. Trying to use a data recovery tool without knowing the root cause of the problem won’t do any good.

There are numerous factors responsible for a faulty hard drive. These could be hot system, frequent crashing, constant freezing, slow processing speed, booting up issues. The longer you ignore these problems; that is how your hard drive will be further damaged. This will in turn lead to loss of video files.

Human error

The truth is that as humans, we are always bound to make mistakes. These could sometimes prove very costly since they can bring about loss of video files. There are cases when important business files have been deleted mistakenly in the past. Human errors are very common. They can bring about formatting of hard drive, data loss and repair of system.

The only way to avoid this problem is to ensure you understand files to be deleted or retained. Most people don’t read messages displayed in dialogue boxes before clicking on “Delete” buttons. This is an easy way to delete important video files without knowing.

Computer viruses

Computer virus is one of the major reasons why people lose video files. Just as the digital world is becoming increasingly popular, viruses and malware are also waxing stronger. One of the most notable causes is when you begin to explore unsecured websites. It can also happen when corrupt files are downloaded and installed in your system.

When your system has been compromised by viruses and malware, there is a very high chance of losing vital files like doc, videos, audios and photos. You will try to open these files but they won’t respond. The best way to overcome this problem is using anti-virus software. This will help to monitor your browsing habit online.

Hard drive formatting

This happens to be another major cause of data loss. Most people format their hard drive without backing up vital files. In the end, these files are lost. Without the help of a paid or free recovery software, you may struggle to get back such data.

It is recommended that you backup important video files before initiating such a process. There are lots of ways to do this. For instance, you can use an external hard drive or even store such files online. This will save you the stress of spending unnecessarily on a data recovery software.

Final words

When it comes to losing your video files, there are lots of reasons which could be responsible for such problem. The tips shared above can help you to a great extent. All you have to do is ensure they are avoided.

 

This is a Sponsored Feature.

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BNP Paribas joins forces with Orange Business Services to deploy SD-WAN for 1,800 retail sites in France

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  • Co-construction approach ensures business continuity during deployment

BNP Paribas has chosen Orange Business Services to deploy an SD-WAN solution in more than 1,800 bank branches across France. Focused on developing and integrating new digital solutions, BNP Paribas continues to provide the highest standards to improve user experience for customers and employees alike.

By integrating Flexible SD-WAN from Orange Business Services, BNP Paribas benefits from a modern and agile technological platform to accelerate its digital transformation. This enables quick and easy deployment of multiple services, such as dynamic routing and path selection, with scalability and flexibility. It also empowers administrators to monitor infrastructure performance and resolve potential network congestion through simple software modifications, thereby optimizing application performance. By deploying SD-WAN, BNP Paribas can take advantage of a fully secure hybrid network that is natively multi-cloud, multi-access and multi-application. The Bank will also benefit from optimized and centralized management and intelligent routing for its new infrastructure.

Close collaboration between business and IT for greater agility

From the start of the project, experts from Orange Business Services and BNP Paribas built the solution design together and prioritized the features to be deployed. More than 3,600 access lines—two per branch, including one Internet access line – are currently being rolled out with a focus on maintaining business continuity for each site during the migration. In addition to the SD-WAN overlay, firewalls for enhanced security are also part of this deployment.

“It was paramount for us to choose a partner who already had proven experience implementing and operating SD-WAN solutions. Orange Business Services stood out as this trusted partner. In addition to their IT expertise, the Orange teams demonstrated a great ability to understand our business challenges, and they knew what needed to be done to support our end-to-end digital transformation. This close collaboration between our teams from the very beginning of the project was one of the keys to its success and to a smooth roll out,” said Bernard Gavgani, Chief Information Officer at BNP Paribas Group.

“We are delighted to support BNP Paribas in their transformation program and deploy the first large-scale SD-WAN project in the retail banking industry for the French market. An indepth understanding of our customers’ business needs is essential to co-develop customized and innovative solutions. Orange Business Services will continue to accompany BNP Paribas’ central and local teams to learn and develop their SD-WAN skills,” said Nadine Foulon-Belkacémi, Executive Vice President, French Major Clients at Orange Business Services.

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