The digital era brings new risks and regulatory challenges for financial services (FS) organisations striving to become more agile with new technologies. 

‘Regulatory Change,’ was the topic of discussion at the most recent Financial Services Change Directors’ Forum held in London. The quarterly event is a gathering of change leaders of leading banks, insurers and financial institutions, which aims to create an open environment toshare experiences and debate the industry change trends and hot topics.

The forum started with a keynote speech from James Woodhouse, Accenture’s lead for finance and risk services for the UK and Ireland. He addressed the new risk and regulatory challenges in the digital era (including the risks around cyber crime), the pressure faced by firms and the evolving way in which regulators are engaging with financial organisations. 

“Regulators are no longer keen to just ‘receive’ the data, they are getting ‘intrusive’ in understanding the root and source of data,” Woodhouse said. “The default strategy used by organisations is to be more tactical and cut corners… and to be ‘just’ good enough. But, this is not enough.” He added, “Senior leaders within financial organisations should use it as an opportunity to transform their organisation – to lower costs, use innovation and RegTech, whilst becoming more agile and customer centric.”

The second keynote speaker of the gathering was Wai Au, a senior advisor for Accenture, presenting her ‘View from the Boardroom.’ She posed the question: “Do you manage the change or are you managed by it?” and challenged forum participants to think about whether they are ‘courageous leaders.’

“Rather than just reacting and managing change, go to the next level by asking the difficult questions and speaking up when something doesn’t feel right,” Au said. She also touched upon the use of new technology and bringing in ideas from the outside to enhance the business. 

The next Change Directors’ Forum will be held in the spring. For more information, or if you are interested in attending, please contact Later this year, the forum will also expand to other locations across North America and Europe. 

To learn more, watch the video: Transforming Financial Services

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