Selecting and implementing a banking system is a major undertaking for all types and sizes of bank. The consequences of an unwise choice are significant. For the bank it can mean a system which costs too much, is late, does not meet user requirements or, in the worst case, simply fails to get implemented at all. The banking systems industry has developed radically over the past decade, enabling banks to use technology to much greater strategic advantage than was previously possible. Nevertheless, a major system change is a daunting proposition. This guide has been designed to help take some of the worry out of it.
The How To Select & Implement A Universal Banking System Guide, written by Martin Whybrow, founder and director of IBS Intelligence, and Eddie Byrne, consultant at Banking Transformation Ltd, sets out a structured approach which will help purchasers avoid the pitfalls of poor selection and also to achieve a successful implementation. Each of the three parts - Selection, Implementation and 10 Case Studies - offers in-depth and unbiased guidance on how to plan a successful project, anticipating issues, exploring potential barriers, and highlighting proven best practice along the way. Click on the section headings below for more information including a table of contents.
- Part One – Best Practices in Banking System Selection
- Part Two – Best Practices in Banking System Implementation
- Part Three – 10 universal banking system implementation projects
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It is crucial not just to make a good choice, but also to be able to demonstrate why it was the best choice in the circumstances. A manager who can show due diligence in the process and satisfy the audit team will be able to sleep better at night.
And yet due diligence does not have to entail a long, laborious selection phase. There are smart ways to streamline the process. What it must do is discover the salient information needed to make the choice and, importantly, the information needed to plan the implementation, maintenance and future development of the system. You might have chosen the best system, but you must be sure that there are no major surprises thereafter. It is simply not good enough to accept assurances from the supplier; they must be demonstrated.
|Example extract of scoring headline items for an initial product and vendor evaluation|
There is a whole discussion to be had around whether the RFP process as a whole is the best way to go about things. Often several systems will meet the vast majority of the requirements and the final decision will come down to other factors, such as the culture of the supplier, the professionalism of its presentations, reference site visits, and yet the selection process will have been loaded much more to the requirements definition and constructing the RFP, with this taking the vast bulk of the time.
The Proof of Concept stage is also a vital one, alongside the gap analysis, testing those gaps in reality and starting to get to grips with the systems that are in contention. It is advisable to do other presentations relatively early in the process, to start to gauge aspects such as a vendor's commitment to the project.
However, it should not be forgotten that the selection process puts a large burden on a supplier and this is most extreme where the selection is heavily reliant on Proof of Concept workshops. Admittedly, in difficult market conditions such as those experienced in the last few years, it is a buyer's market but vendors will walk away from selections if they decide the cost of participation is too high relative to the chances of a successful outcome. A bank that makes the process too cumbersome, including those that charge for a vendor to submit an RFP (a practice that is still commonplace in some parts of the world), are running the risk of excluding the most appropriate solution before the selection is even under way.
The How to Select & Implement A Universal Banking System Guide explores in-depth the best practices for system selection in the following sections:
Contents of Part One: Selection
Selection: Factors to Consider >>
Selection: Lessons from Actual Banking Systems Projects >>
Selection: The Selection Team >>
Selection: The Four-Phase Approach >>
Selection: Contract Negotiations >>
|FREE EXTRACT: Graphic comparing suppliers for an example selection project|
Major functional gaps in the system will be filled as part of the implementation process. Filling those gaps will involve high risks in terms of timescale, meeting user requirements and software bugs. If the vendor is new to the region or is partnering with a new integrator, then the project will depend on building a local team or the successful development of the new relationship.
The way in which these risks are mitigated will have a significant impact on the design of the implementation project. For instance, where a new capability claimed by a vendor has not been proven in the field, then an initial proof-of-concept phase would reduce the risk of disruption later in the project. This may well have been a focus in the selection. Or the teamwork with a new systems integrator could be tested by identifying early joint tasks, and monitoring output. There are always two ways of mitigating a risk – by reducing the probability the hazard will happen or reducing the impact on the business if it does.
The How to Select & Implement A Universal Banking System Guide explores in-depth the best practices for system implementation in the following sections:
Contents of Part Two: Implementation
Implementation: Planning, Risks and Tips >>
Implementation: Planning - The People Aspects >>
Implementation: Business Ownership, Buy-in and Communication >>
Implementation: The Key Role of the Business Process Workstream >>
Implementation: MI and Regulatory Reports >>
Implementation: Training (FREE PREVIEW) >>
Implementation: Data Cleansing and Migration >>
Implementation: Managing Testing in a Core Banking Replacement Project >>
In the third part of the guide, we detail the experiences and lessons from 10 banks that have implemented a universal banking system - from selection and process, to go-live and results.
Contents of Part Three: Case Studies
Case Study: Alpha Bank (International multisite) – Oracle FSS Flexcube >>
Case Study: Bank Negara Indonesia (Indonesia) – TCS Bancs >>
Case Study: Boubyan Bank (Kuwait) – Path Solutions iMAL >>
Case Study: Hypo Alpe Adria Bank/ZIS (Austria) – Temenos T24 >>
Case Study: MTS Bank (Russia) – CFT CFT-Bank >>
Case Study: Rabobank IDB (The Netherlands & international) – Callataÿ & Wouters Thaler >>
Case Study: Saigon Hanoi Bank (Vietnam) – Polaris Intellect GUB >>
Case Study: Saudi Hollandi Bank (Saudi Arabia) – Temenos T24 >>
Case Study: St. Galler Kantonalbank (Switzerland) – Avaloq Banking System >>
Case Study: UnionBank of the Philippines (Philippines) – Infosys Finacle >>
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