We continue with our series as we meet and talk to industry leaders.Remember on this post we sample questions sent by you our reader and put it across to executives/entreprenuers around the globe and ask them what makes them and how can one get to where they are.

Today we have the pleasure of sitting across a banker,,Peter N and as we get to know him,we also get a glimpse of the banking industry.

So here we go! Let’s put him to the paces.

Tell us a bit about yourself. How long have you been in banking?

I have been in the banking industry for 7 years. I have had the pleasure to work in different roles including risk and client delivery positions.Recently I have moved to a different sector but I carry with me the lessons and the passions borne out of being in the industry

Is there a specific course that you would advise one to embark on early in their career in order to   excel in banking? The landscape of the banking industry has changed over time. I would recommend professional courses like project management, Business process design, programming, among others. The average banker needs to be able to have a diversified skill set in order to thrive.

How is technology influencing banking methods today? What tools are you using?

Wow I mean banking is technology. Processes are constantly being automated much to the delight of the clients. Take for example debit and credit card deployments.This would at some point take weeks if not a month. Nowadays a client walks in and sets up their account including getting their cards in hours.

Back end systems have been merged with front end systems. In the near future I predict a client will be able to do everything at the touch of a button. There will be minimum contact with the physical part of the bank.

We have seen reports where automation is expected to have a significant impact on jobs especially in banking. What is your take on this? Indeed. Bank walk ins will continue to be few and in between. Processes are being automated at the micro level. The impact of this is significant as quantifiable hands on hours of work is diminishing. This means that in times of lull, numbers can be reduced. Over the next five years I expect to see bank job numbers dwindle in specific markets in the hundreds.However we are seeing a steady growth in our local banks who are making strides in different economies.This may ease that pressure a bit.   

Banks have always been considered to have the “first right” in facilitating payments. With the growth of platforms like Safaricom’s Mpesa and loan apps, are banks feeling the pinch of competition? There is always a quiet unsaid panic over the role of Fintechs. They are likely to acquire banking licenses and this will be a shift in the industry. However banks facilitate payments in diversified areas where they have developed competencies and because of this are able to concentrate on their core areas. So no. In fact Fintechs have actually added wind to their sails if you ask me. But this may change and therefore banks need to remain vigilant and more importantly move with the times too.

Is an evolution of banking a likely occurrence? How would this evolution look like once the dust settles? Heheh..I mean the evolution has already started and may take years before we decide that maybe this is the bank of the now and the future. But I expect that there will be less and less need of brick and mortar banks. The digital space will likely take over into the future.

Lastly a fun question? You are asked to advise 5 CEOS of major banks. What do you tell them about the future outlook of the banking system? I think one of the things I would question is how they are looking at the new age customer. Banks overlook the fact that their primary asset is the client’s account. If you were to go back to that premise and ask what services you offer around that single account, then re-imagine the future life of that individual client, you are likely to develop new age digital systems.

There you have it,banking and technology are apparently blending to form something different.We hope to meet Peter in his new career and wish him the best in it.

Feel free to comment and you could even throw in suggestions on questions, people and or industry that you would like to get feedback from.Looking forward to our next interview.

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