The financial services industry faces special challenges when implementing an IT service. The quite necessary higher standard of performance creates much less patience for the financial industry in the general public. You must properly assess the core deliverables of your business before committing to a long term IT supplier. Here are five of the most important criteria for consideration of your tech partner.
There is no such excuse as “give us a minute” when a customer needs to access funds. It happens now, or you lose that customer. As a matter of fact, the emergencies that hit you are likely to hit your constituents as well, and they depend on you in the same way they depend on the emergency flashlight they’ve been charging for a year in the basement. What was all the preparation for if you don’t work now? Your IT partner must understand this as a primary concern.
Real Time Access
Instant access to funds over multiple operating systems is the norm in the market today, and your infrastructure will determine your ability to participate in this economy. Your IT provider must ensure your stability regardless of your chosen operating system, and cross-compatibility over industry standards is second in line after data security as a priority.
Not only do you need to protect the data of your customer base, but you need to be smooth about it. Your customers expect personalized service, and they do not care about your turnover rate. Your IT leads directly into your data stream for CRM, helping to ensure that no matter who picks up the phone on your end, your customers get the same familiar service, because the information is readily available. Think of your own experience as a consumer: How annoying is it to give your information three times to a company that you thought had your credit card information on file for ongoing purchases? Does this engender any kind of trust in you?
Customer Data Protection
The security of your data is more than a customer service; you may possibly find yourself on the hook legally if you allow the personal or the financial information from your customers to leak. Any IT service that you choose must stay ahead of the curve for all malware and give you a high level of internal security as well. In quite a few cases of recent financial malfeasance, the breach came from both sides.
You need to be as mobile as your customer base. Commerce is moving into the mobile space, and if your business network cannot keep up, then you will not last long in the modern economy. Make sure that your IT partner has the ability to protect your merchant services in the mobile space as well as synchronize your efforts with your preferred payment network over other industry standard networks.
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