BPR, digitization in UAE banks paramount


Tech-savvy UAE is quickly adapting to smart solutions in all segments, thanks to the state policy announced to transform to the smart government, with the aim to expedite the knowledge and digital economy. Being instrumental in the knowledge-driven economy, the banking sector is speeding up its efforts to improve quality of service for customers. Hence by adapting to Business Process Re-Engineering (BPR), the banks will have greater ability in identifying requirements of customers to provide quality services. The BPR will also help the banks to reduce costs and improve productivity through newer and more efficient processes.
Indeed, transforming to BPR to implement advanced operating models that overcome various challenges, gives the UAE banks an advantage to enhance service delivery to customers.
These measures involve technological innovation to process re-engineering organisational structures. The banks must do so to incorporate customer requirements within all touch-points at every step of the process from corporate values to strategy to branding, operations, finance and to the final delivery of products and services.
Technology will make most customers well- informed. The banks have to put customers at the heart of all operational decisions. By doing so, the banks can quickly identify the services customers require and eliminate any obstacles and inefficiencies in achieving these outcomes.
This approach is important because the UAE has a unique customer-base. The country hosts over 200 nationalities with distinct requirements and expectations. Hence, banks find it difficult to identify their customers and what services they require. But with the help of technology, this issue can be surmounted. By making this distinction, banks will qualify in the market to compete and
improve the customer strategies.
These structural reforms are espoused with regulations imposed by the Central Bank of the UAE to encourage standardisation and control in addition to ensuring stability and protection for customers. The regulations will bring in quicker and more advanced modifications in business processes in addition to establishing compliance standards for the wider benefit of the industry.
At the heart of these rapid changes, spread of smartphones has given the banks another significant gain in the number of mobile banking customers. Smartphone and Internet penetration in the UAE are among the highest in the world.
With this digitization, consumers in the UAE have shown a preference to get their banking needs done remotely through the internet to avoid traffic, parking and queues. By going digital, the customer has saved time and effort for himself and the bank as well. The government has taken initiatives to digitise the UAE’s banking and financial sector under its smart government programme, to offer digital solutions, enhance financial inclusion and minimise transaction costs for consumers.
Through this step the UAE government maximizes its drive for the digital economy to keep pace with the international norms in this respect and diversify its economy. Moreover, consumers in recent years — mostly the younger generation — have shown a preference to meet their banking needs remotely through the Internet.
To boost the digitisation efforts, the UAE Banks Federation (UBF) has given the green light to the mobile wallet initiative which will revolutionise digital payments in the country. The project represents the financial component of
the UAE’s Smart Government initiative, and has been managed under the
supervision of the UAE Banks Federation.
Yet, there are challenges. Some customers still get difficulty to transform to the digital processes. The banks are working in parallel to serve the tech savvy customers and those lagging behind.
To meet these high customer expectations, banks must accelerate the digitisation of their business processes through automating existing processes. They must cut the number of steps required, reduce the number of documents, develop automated decision making. Operating models, skills, organisational structures, and roles need to be redesigned to match the reinvented processes.
The UAE banking sector is on the right track of digtisation to improve services and better serve the tech-savvy customers. The sector has to give impetus to
Business Process Re-Engineering coupled with digitization to make its services seamless and move towards smart solutions.

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