Your core platform must accommodate user-led design – and to get that right we have to understand the challenges and opportunities that real people

Wealth Management and Private Banking

13 June 2019

Tech futuresWealth Management and Private BankingWealth Management and Private Banking


  • Retail banking is already quite sophisticated in this area whilst Wealth Management is playing catch-up.
  • Things to think about:
    • “Adopt not Adapt”
    • Industrialisation in the Back Office – STP, automation etc.
    • Clients talk about what they’re doing today and how they want to use the platform in the future – this can drive the future platform’s USP
  •  Once firms go through the process of selecting an off-the-shelf platform, they should commit to their choice, rather than customising the solution to the point of being bespoke.
  • Avaloq stressed the importance of the end-user, i.e. of user-oriented design, and thinking about both the audience and their role/objectives.

Key challenges

  • Firms need to think about their strategy in choosing a platform. If their desire for change is not fully justified, it can lead to panic-buying. Is the objective to address an immediate concern, or to future-proof the business?
  • When choosing a platform based on a customer-centric approach, it’s difficult to align the conflicting needs of different stakeholders e.g. across various jurisdictions, across various regulations, processes etc.
  • Core platforms must adapt to keep up with change in regulatory requirements e.g. by updating APIs and systems.
  • Technology is continuously evolving, as are the requirements of market participants. Firms can struggle to find the balance between committing to a single platform, and also being flexible enough to keep up with the changing technology landscape.
  • There can be resistance to change existing business practices, processes and use of tools, employees may have vested interests in the solutions that already exist.
  • There can be additional difficulties with managing the entire front-to-back process efficiently – firm tend to focus on one area at a time, which means it is difficult to ensure interoperability of components, integrity of data and interfaces.


  • Platform providers currently react to demands from wealth management firms and private banks, and not the other way around. Rather than focusing on how best to fit the technology to the firm, firms should aim to adopt the market leading technology, and services it will enable.
  • Wealth managers need users to tell them what they need from the platform providers, otherwise product managers design around their own internal processes. The counter argument is that platform providers are also unable to keep up with consumer behaviour, as this is changing at a very fast pace.
  • In summary, understand target market, identify the solution you want to bring to market, and then work with partners to understand whether this will be future-proof.

Expert: Suman Rao, Head of UK product management and Pre-Sales offering & Richard Berry, Head of Product Management, Avaloq

Facilitator: Gilly Green, Catalyst