The acceleration of information technology poses major challenges for the business world. But now a sword of Damocles is poised above financial institutions and contact centers handling investment products: MiFID II.
Scheduled for full implementation on January 3, 2018, this regulatory directive commands all interactions leading to a sale must be preserved for a minimum of five years. Regardless of the channel: voice, email, video or chat, even advice about investment products provided in response to customer inquiries must be recorded and archived for easy retrieval.
MiFID II affects all organizations conducting business in Europe, and its 2,000 pages of regulations must be strictly followed. Minor changes to the regulations may be enacted at any time, with companies failing to comply receiving major fines.
Top executives at contact centers, banks, insurance companies and security firms are haunted by this impending reality, and those who have meticulously studied their options have come to the same conclusion: adoption of the Cloud represents their only chance of survival.
The Cloud is following in the tradition of exponential adoption of new technologies. While it took electricity 46 years to reach 25 percent adoption in the United States, that number has steadily declined, according to the Pew Research Center:
- Telephone: 35 years
- Radio: 31 years
- Television: 26 years
- Personal Computer: 16 years
- Mobile Phone (News - Alert): 13 years
- The Internet: seven years
Moreover, the Cloud is transformational in its ability to provide the latest technology like water from a tap, so each user can only select the features they really need. Then, when requirements change, either internally due to consolidation or growth, or externally due to new capabilities or regulatory mandates, the user is not stuck with a complex infrastructure needing a complete overhaul.
For financial institutions and contact centers handling investment products, MiFID II has only accelerated the need for Cloud technology in an ultra-competitive environment. The quality of customer service has become a driver in consumer decisions, and the power of the Cloud to affect that service is undisputed.
Though driven by MiFID II, the Cloud can be used for many related functions as well. Workforce optimization encompassing communications recording, quality assurance, speech analytics, eLearning, workforce management and customer feedback is now available as both on-premise solutions and via the Cloud. These capabilities may be applied in an automated manner, especially for high-volume organizations with an otherwise unmanageable number of interactions.
For compliance with MiFID II, fail-safe operation and redundant architecture must be included as any system failure could result in major fines. Also, to meet PCI (News - Alert)-DSS mandates, some elements must NOT be recorded, such as credit card security codes. Encryption must be included for security purposes while tamper-proof recording will assist in any investigations.
Technology in all these areas is rapidly developing – another reason why the Cloud is essential.
The full enactment of MiFID II on January 3, 2018 demands immediate attention by financial institutions doing business in Europe to avoid substantial monetary fines. The only forward-looking approach to this development involves implementation of Cloud technology. The Cloud enables scalability and adaptation to new requirements without costly changes to your existing infrastructure and ensures you are only using the most advanced versions of the features you really need.
About the Author
Michael Krause joined ASC (News - Alert) Technologies AG in mid-2007. He initially worked as a vertical sales manager for the retail division and was responsible for sales in Germany in the Mitte region. As Vice President of Sales Central & Eastern Europe, he now serves all Central Eastern Europe partners and end-customers.
As a trained IT salesman and skilled business manager with more than 15 years of professional experience, Michael Krause has become invaluable to ASC in sales and service management, business development and ITK solution sales.
ASC Technologies AG is a leading global provider of innovative solutions to record, analyze and evaluate multimedia-based communications. ASC’s solutions reveal vital information, enabling companies and organizations to considerably improve their value creation: contact centers enhance customer service, efficiently deploy staff and increase productivity. For more information, visit www.asc.de; call 917-475-9200; email [email protected]; or write ASC Americas L.P., 69 Charlton Street, New York, NY 10014.
Edited by Alicia Young