"The reality is that banks continue to provide the corner stones to our economies"

By Sarah Gill | 29 June 2016

The data revolution will transform banking in ways that have not even been dreamed up yet. From fraud detection and risk maanagement to personalisation and cost cutting, the potential for data to improve the financial industry is massive, which is why we dedicated a category to Innovation in Data Solutions at our Fintech Innovation Awards. The winner this year was Nomis Solutions and here we talk about banks, fintech and building a kickass team. 

What problem is Nomis tackling?

When it comes to pricing, banks traditionally categorise customers into segments and provide them with a common rate. Nomis proves that there is a better, more scientific way to engage with customers individually, offering them a rate that will maintain their loyalty while delivering profitability to the bank. We use data analytics to build a profile of the customer, understanding their preferences, behaviours and sensitivities. The information is fed into a big data platform which calculates an optimised price that fulfils a number of business objectives while giving the customer the rates they expect based on their rate sensitivity. 

Ideas versus execution: what does it take to make great ideas reality in fintech?

Our starting point has always been intellectual curiosity fuelled by a desire to understand what drives customer demand, price sensitivity and consumer behaviour. We take this understanding and engineer software with the power to drive growth and profitability in the banking sector. Our strategy brings together experts in research, statistics and software development, working together intricately to build the best product possible.

What are the qualities of a kickass team in your eyes?

We’re a startup of 100 people globally and have built a culture where everyone knows everyone.  We’ve found that minimising the dynamic of hierarchy means that great ideas rise to the top. Board members and the executive team also have a much better understanding of their team and can work to get the very best out of them.

What’s the most important lesson you learned building Nomis?

The most important lesson learned building Nomis is that it’s all about hiring the right people for the right roles and then getting out of their way so they can succeed. It’s important not to lower the bar on hiring, but rather continue to upgrade and build the team. Empowering and trusting the team to figure out solutions to challenges is the key to unlocking their full potential.

Where are the biggest opportunities for innovation in your industry?

In the fintech space, we hear a lot about the disruptive innovators set to dismantle the status quo and formulate an entirely different approach to finance. The reality is that banks continue to provide the corner stones to our economies. We have highlighted the need to bring banks up the innovation curve to successfully fend off these would-be disrupters.  Using our solution, banks have found themselves to be much more agile and responsive to both their customers and their competitors. Moving forward, we see major opportunities to be in establishing a sustainable approach to banking across the board, where banks maintain healthy, long term and profitable relationships with their customers. We believe that the answer lies in the right application of customer data.

What are the key drivers of change in your sector right now?

A growing appetite among retail banks to invest in the technologies that bring them closer to their customers. This spans across the board from customer service, to security and authentication and to the bank’s core competencies. Other consumer facing sectors such as retail are way ahead of most banks in terms of their ability to leverage data, using it to design, develop and deliver consumer services. Consumer expectation has grown correspondingly and most now expect delivery that is slick, transparent and pre-emptive of their decisions. Within banks, portfolio strategies must now be based on a deep understanding of consumer behaviours with a view to predict future behaviours.

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