Like artists, brilliant innovations are not always appreciated immediately. Such is the case of the QR Code, invented in Japan in the early 1990s to boost manufacturing and retail efficiency. In the socially distanced COVID-19 environment, this invention is proving indispensable in a variety of transactions and activities, from making payments to reading menus. Partnering with smartphones, the QR Code is proving itself a boon to both commerce and health.
As a host of industry initiatives, innovative technologies and new digital forms of currency emerge, payments are rapidly evolving—with multiple routes emerging that each look likely to lead to a payment destination that is instant, 24/7/365 and fully transparent. With banks seeking to navigate this changing landscape, how is this payment destination being secured? Not with a one-size-fits-all remedy, but through a combination of developing technologies and solutions.
If one word defines the last decade, it is disruptive; but if the events of 2020 so far are any indication, we “ain’t seen nothing yet”. No sector is more likely to be disrupted by the pandemic than banking; however, those that see opportunity in crisis can outmatch this major threat to their bottom lines. Resilience, adaptability and vision are must-haves for banks that choose to lead out of turmoil.
Many of us are now familiar with the concept of software as a service (SaaS)—that is, the licensing and delivery model that enables users to subscribe to use-specific programmes and applications over the internet rather than having to buy them outright and install them on their computers.
If there was ever a time for banks to rise to a challenge, it is now, as COVID-19 ravages the physical and financial health of millions. The Great Recession, created largely by banking malpractice, prompted positive changes in banking but revealed serious shortfalls in customer service. This time around, can banks stand behind all of their customers, provide crucial aid wherever needed and offer much-needed hope for a better future?