Intelligent Issue 04 | Page 17



Sam Wilson , UK Country Manager at Serviceware , discusses the path to achieving growth and innovation required of the financial services sector to accommodate the needs of both customers and employees .

Working practices changed radically in 2020 , but not just for the lockdown period – working from home has become the ‘ new norm ’ for many employees . It is expected that hybrid working is likely to be the dominant model in organisations for the foreseeable future , especially with working from home being a lifeline and an important enabler for businesses that are weathering the energy crisis . According to statistics average cost of occupying a new build office in the UK rose by 1.2 % over the 12 months to June 2021 to just shy of £ 80 per sq ft . With no energy price cap for businesses and government support not expected to arrive for some time , this figure is expected to significantly increase . As a result , businesses could ask staff to work from home instead .

Even before the energy crisis , employees from a wide range of industries were keen to continue to work from home following the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak in early 2020 . In fact , 42 % of all IT decision-makers and 38 % of business decision-makers in the financial services sector believed that half ( 50 %) of their workforce will remain hybrid post-pandemic , according to Riverbed ’ s Hybrid Work Global Survey 2021 . While it is no secret that workers have become accustomed to the convenience and flexibility of remote working , hybrid working comes with a new set of challenges for many business leaders .
Even before the pandemic , the financial services industry was under increasing pressure from its customers to deliver greater speed , convenience and personalisation by embracing digital innovation .
Many organisations in the industry that had previously relied on legacy systems have had to completely restructure their services to cater for both existing and rapidly evolving customer needs . Previously the sector relied heavily on face-to-face interactions to build meaningful customer relationships , but we are now seeing these appointments being carried out virtually . Yet , many major commercial and retail banks that embraced remote work during lockdown have now committed to permanent hybrid set-ups . Lloyds Banking Group has decided to embrace hybrid working , following a survey where 77 % of its employees said they wanted to work
CIOs should take the time to review their interim solutions and assess what their business needs are . www . intelligentfin . tech