In my last post, we talked about the need for alternate options for some financial enterprises when it comes to cultivating AML/KYC talent. Accenture has taken an in-depth look at talent solutions for anti-money laundering and know your customer (AML/KYC) in our paper, Leveraging enhanced talent development programs to increase anti-money laundering workforce effectiveness.

We’ve also explored the broader concerns around AML/KYC compliance in our paper, Anti-money laundering and know your customer programs: Sustainability through managed services, and the accompanying presentation.

Talent development for AML/KYC is a specific concern, and one not easily solved for many financial firms. Fatigue and turnover are high, hiring is challenging in a saturated market, and learning programs may not have kept pace with current industry and regulatory trends.

So what alternatives are available to firms for meeting KYC/AML requirements?

Accenture suggests three options to consider:

  1. Efficiently boosting AML talent:

    Here, a three-pronged approach might work. Step one is to establish a formal learning program, positioning AML/KYC as a function in which the business can invest. Next, the programs themselves may best be designed to offer role-based training, aligned to the business’s competency models and complete with certification requirements. Finally, the program could include blended learning approaches, and include ongoing reinforcement techniques.

    These steps can help create a robust AML/KYC workforce over time.

  2. Migrating to a managed services model:

    For those organizations that choose migrating to a managed services model to handle AML/KYC, many benefits can be had. Why? Some businesses might find their current model is built on inefficient or manual processes. Sustaining these at the higher level needed to support new AML/KYC work might not be feasible, and upgrading the old model might not be an option either. Then there’s the flip side. For some institutions, finding the right resources to support an existing model that is updated to include AML/KYC may be a challenge.

    By contrast, a managed services approach brings reduced costs, better access to the right skill set, global capabilities, scalability and improved quality throughout the AML/KYC program. For many, this option is worth considering.

  3. Adding robotic process automation to the mix:

    There’s one more step down this journey: Adding robots or, in essence, using technology to automate processes otherwise done by humans. Robotic process automation (RPA) offers advantages that humans can’t: It gets the job done, and also records and remembers the details of the job, bringing more data into the picture.

The idea of RPA is not new and it isn’t entirely unexpected either; our supporting presentation on the topic notes that 84 percent of banking executives surveyed by Accenture anticipate having to “train” their machines as much as they train their people in the future.[1] RPA brings even more dynamic capabilities than managed services, handling higher demand as easily as it knocks off lighter loads. Robotic processes can take place on a 24/7 basis, too.

View the presentation

Combing through the AML/KYC effort, financial firms may identify sub-processes or elements suitable to RPA, such as highly manual, high-volume efforts where the potential for error is high. These pieces might be prime candidates for RPA.

With all these options available to financial firms, how can each enterprise go about choosing the approach that is right for them? If a combined approach makes sense, what pieces should be combined, and how?

My next blog will take a look at how firms can choose the best approach for their AML/KYC model.

[1] Accenture Technology Vision 2015 Survey

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