Take The Drama Out

During a recent industry workshop, several leading institutions, including Goldman Sachs, HSBC and Citi, among others, indicated that they were in the process of shifting away from the traditional periodic refreshes as they seek to implement a ‘Perpetual KYC’ approach. Notably, according to a survey among the workshop participants, approximately three quarters “were engaged in planning or working towards the delivery of Perpetual KYC.”

And it’s not surprising to see why.

According to the Americans Bankers Association, the current KYC process “has spurred more than 10 percent of corporate clients to say they were changing banks.” Furthermore, a survey by the Asian Development Bank discovered that nearly all financial institutions (~99%) “believe that underinvesting in technology directly affects client onboarding and retention, yet 33 percent have not made any technological investments to improve their customers’ onboarding experiences.”

In Sigma’s 'Take the Drama Out of Periodic Reviews with Perpetual Relationship Monitoring’ whitepaper, we advocated for this new approach to monitoring, which leverages the power of advanced technology. This approach is further supported by McKinsey’s recommendation to “introduce event-based review cycles for low-risk customers, [thereby ensuring] that the due diligence performed is commensurate with risk and regulatory requirements, [and] remove[s] redundant checks.” The resulting advancements that could be achieved in the KYC and monitoring space certainly has the ability to “increas[e] revenue, elevat[e] the customer experience and enhanc[e] regulatory adherence.” In fact, according to a financial research firm, applying advanced technologies to “compliance, KYC and AML processes, as well as other forms of data processing, will generate savings by targeting compliance, KYC/AML, authentication and data processing, resulting in a reduction of $217bn.”

Most importantly, while some may view a compliance function as a pure cost center, advances in technology truly have “the potential to transform some of the functions into revenue generating units, without sacrificing integrity, [which] is equally as exciting” for the wider financial sector.

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