Why Financial Institutions Are Banking on Business Intelligence


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Not so long ago, available financial data was limited to collecting basic customer information such as name, address, and transaction history. Today, financial institutions have access to massive volumes of invaluable, first-party customer data generated by their own mobile applications, web portals, and other digital resources. At the same time, there’s a continued push for the collection of even more data through open-data initiatives and financial data sharing.  

A report from the McKinsey Global Institute reports that an open-data ecosystem holds a potential increase of 1% to 1.5% of GDP in 2030 in the European Union, the United Kingdom, and the United States alone mostly through “more accurate credit risk evaluation and risk-based pricing, improved workforce allocation, better product delivery and customer service, and stronger fraud protection.” 

While this influx of information can bring deeper insights into customer behavior, internal operations, and the industry as a whole, its ultimate value is heavily reliant on how that data is assembled, processed, stored, and interpreted through business intelligence in banking.  As promising as the big data revolution is, financial institutions need to implement good business intelligence practices to ensure they make the most of it. 

What is Business Intelligence?

Business intelligence (BI) refers to the practice of converting big data into actionable insights. The goal of business intelligence is to present data in new, easy-to-understand ways so that it can be used to support crucial business decisions.

The banking and finance industries can use the insights they gain to:

  • Understand customer purchase behaviors
  • Support the budgeting and planning processes
  • Measure marketing campaign effectiveness
  • Make sales predictions and financial estimations
  • Analyze and improve operational performance
  • Organize data and create reports for regulatory compliance

How the Banking Industry is Using Business Intelligence

The idea of business intelligence sounds great, right? Data that is simple to understand and apply to real-life decision-making is something every industry can benefit from. But making sense of the large amount of data available across the banking and finance industries is no easy feat. It would be incredibly tedious, overwhelming, and time-consuming if it were to be done manually.

Considering the volume of information most companies have dispersed across various applications and services, achieving a 360-degree view of your customers and business as a whole can be a challenge for any size business. In order to use business intelligence practices to your advantage, a unified aggregate of data is an absolute must-have. That’s why businesses are utilizing software tools to quickly understand, analyze, and find value in big data.

Business Intelligence Tools

Business intelligence software tools, such as Microsoft Power BI, provide easy-to-understand visualizations of data to help organizations uncover actionable insights. Greater visibility into your historical and current data enables you to better understand trends and implement predictive analytics. These tools can merge disparate data from across various business applications to create a unified source of information that anyone in your company can use.

By creating a collective repository of data, business intelligence software cuts out the tedious work in a straightforward platform that makes it easy to:

  • Integrate data from various business applications and services
  • Gain more visibility into the entirety of your business
  • Receive up-to-date data and generate reports in real-time
  • Access information quickly and in easy-to-understand formats
  • Identify and present timely offers to customers

The Benefits of Business Intelligence Tools

Reduce Risks

Business intelligence tools can mitigate risks by helping you put data into action. By tracking customer behavior, you can quickly detect fraudulent activities. And by tracking employee behavior, you can ensure they are in compliance with industry regulations. 

The data you have at your disposal, along with information related to the current economic climate, can also be used to analyze credit portfolios and spot possible instances of delinquency. Overall, business intelligence tools are a proactive way to mitigate risks across any financial sector. 

Drive Profitability

Retaining your current customers is a highly profitable and sustainable business strategy, making your business intelligence tools one of your greatest assets. 

With the most up-to-date information on your customers — including the most profitable ones — you’ll be able to market the most relevant products and services to their needs and preferences. You can also gather information to understand which products may need to be enhanced and which can be sunset. 

Gain a Competitive Advantage

Personalization is a hot topic in every industry, and the banking and finance sectors have been quick to catch on. Because of this, gaining an edge over the competition is crucial. 

Using business intelligence tools, the data you already have makes it simple to personalize customer experiences. Organizations can monitor market trends to strategize new investment opportunities, predict customer behavior through analytics, and tailor products to each customer’s individual needs. 

Optimize Marketing Efforts

The data you have relating to customer relationship management (CRM) can provide insight into the profitability of your marketing campaigns. Measuring email performance, advertising spend, and overall campaign success can help you determine areas where your messages are resonating with customers and opportunities to improve.

Personalize the Customer Experience 

Data is essential for developing customer segmentation and optimized omnichannel communication to deliver hyper-personalized and timely content for customers. Fintech “disruptor banks” have been at the forefront of this personalization revolution thanks to the large amount of customer data captured by their integrated digital offerings.  

Business intelligence in the banking sector can provide financial institutions with the technological capabilities they need to disrupt the disruptors by presenting more targeted offerings, increasing customer satisfaction, and maximizing cross-selling and upselling opportunities.

Improve Internal Operations

The efficiency of your internal organization is just as important as your customers’ experience with your company. Using business intelligence software solutions is a data-backed way to assess resource allocation, operational procedures, and the performance of your employees. Your data can tell you areas where you can cut costs, improve the customer experience, and maximize operational efficiencies. 

Learn why the right customer data platform is a key component for how financial institutions can manage big data in our Customer Data Platform whitepaper.

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The right software tools can offer comprehensive business intelligence capabilities that will exceed the expectations of your organization. Hitachi Solutions is proud to partner with Microsoft to deliver Microsoft Power BI, a cloud-based business analytics service. For more information about the product or to consult with an expert, contact Hitachi Solutions