Group 905

It is time to do more with less

It is time to do more with less

A review of CSI’s 2024 Banking Priorities report

By Jean Donnelly
Sandbox Banking

I recently came across CSI’s 2024 Banking Priorities report – which is the ninth iteration of the survey to community bankers across the country and I was hooked. Given the tumultuous 2023 for banks, I was curious to understand what the priorities will be going forward. CSI is a true leader with its mission to empower community and regional banks with technologies that enable their own growth and solve their most pressing technological challenges. They have achieved a lot of momentum through both recent acquisitions like Hawthorne River and obtaining strategic investments to continue to deliver innovative solutions, so I wanted to double click on their viewpoint.

Some interesting areas of focus emerged.

In point, two thirds of folks felt that their banks will continue to expand their customer base – so it will be about having access to the right products to do so.

94% of respondents emphasized the need for the latest technologies to satisfy customers. This zeroes in on where the biggest gains can be made for banks – a focus on digital offerings like account opening, and ensuring reduced friction and cost given the low spreads in the high interest rate environment. Banks need to ensure they are competitive, as evident in their response to strategies around interest income opportunities.While digital account opening has been a primary focus for years, banks are looking to streamline access to new deposits and acquire new business faster.

As CSI knows, this means ensuring expansion and access to many different solutions – whether they are FinTech partnerships or built by banks or a combo.  I appreciated their double click on open banking and BaaS (which is having its moment in the spotlight for good and bad reasons).  Smart core providers understand that expanding integration capability can allow more “plug and play’ best of breed products” that can be customized for their community bank customer’s market needs. 

API usage is gaining traction especially in how it can be utilized for customized workflows, as well as other key open banking use cases noted in the survey. In the past, many third party technologies were disconnected from the core system, however APIs allow seamless connections, enabling real-time data movement and reducing the need for extensive staff and operational data transfers.

The moral of the story: It is time to do more with less! Data leverage and automation for financial institutions can only be enhanced through API development. Adaptability and choice together are the path forward.