Are you Adapting to the Financial Sector’s New Challenges?

In his scientific assessment of competing species, Charles Darwin concluded that it wasn’t necessarily the strongest that survived, but the most adaptable. In the financial world, an ability to respond to changing circumstances has always been a vital attribute. But today it is arguably more important than ever, as the industry grapples with challenges from a number of angles.

There are new competitive threats. Blockchain and smart contracts are changing the way people procure financial services. At the same time, client expectations are continually rising, a process accelerated by the arrival of new digitally-orientated competitors.

Recruitment is also a challenge, as skills shortages take their toll on the ability of businesses to grow and innovate.

Then there are compliance obligations, which are getting tougher. GDPR and PSD2 will continue to have major effects on financial services, which spend an estimated £5 billion each year on compliance.

Cybersecurity is another pressing concern. Financial services are a prime target for hackers, with large banks of sensitive and lucrative data that can be stolen and sold on.

All of this is happening against a backdrop of economic uncertainty, driven by issues including Brexit, which are forcing financial firms to reconsider where and how they work.

In response, forward-looking firms are reviewing and reshaping established working practices and structures, assisted by technologies that allow for greater flexibility, responsiveness, efficiency and service levels.

New ways of working

Establishing new ways of working depends on equipping key personnel with the tools to be agile, productive and compliant, regardless of where they are working.

CDW is working with Microsoft to demonstrate the potential of the Microsoft Surface family in the professional services sector. Let’s look at how the key capabilities of Microsoft Surface come into play at different levels of the organisation.

Out in the field, employees including insurance adjusters and wealth advisors benefit from having the latest productivity and collaboration tools built into a device that enables online connectivity even without Wi-Fi. The Microsoft Surface Go, with advanced LTE capabilities and scope for the insertion of a SIM card, empowers these professionals to work without compromise. They can deliver enhanced customer experiences with on-the-spot insight.

Back at the office, colleagues including corporate legal associates and solicitors could use the Microsoft Surface Pro 6, to draft complex documents, work with colleagues via Teams, bring up information via PixelSense touchscreens and run full-featured desktop and mobile apps.

However, making a case for IT investment requires robust ROI projections that are notoriously difficult to calculate.

What’s the payback?

To establish a robust business case for its Surface devices and associated software, Microsoft commissioned Forrester Consulting to conduct a Total Economic Impact™ (TEI).

The objective was to examine the potential ROI enterprises may realise by implementing Microsoft 365 Enterprise on Microsoft Surface devices. To better understand the benefits, costs, and risks associated with this investment, Forrester interviewed and surveyed hundreds of customers with experience using Microsoft 365 on Microsoft Surface devices.

In the report, ‘Maximizing Your ROI From Microsoft 365 Enterprise

With Microsoft Surface[i], Forrester concluded that organisations using Microsoft Surface devices powered by Microsoft 365 Enterprise have the following three-year financial impact:

  • $21.06 million in benefits versus costs of $9.93 million, resulting in a net present value (NPV) of $11.13 million and an ROI of 112%.[ii]
  • Payback period of 16 months.

Forrester reported: “To rapidly innovate, better serve customers, and engage workers, organisations across the globe are using technology-driven solutions that improve information sharing, enhance teamwork, accelerate decision making and drive process efficiencies. Organisations are leveraging modern devices with next-generation capabilities, including voice recognition, digital pens, and touchscreens, to further empower their digitally-driven workforces. This strategy is working: 62% of information workers agree that using these next-generation technologies help to make them more productive in their jobs.”

Quantified benefits

The following risk-adjusted quantified benefits are representative of those experienced by the companies surveyed and interviewed:

  • Employees more than doubled the communication, information sharing, and business workflow productivity gains seen from using Microsoft 365 Enterprise without Surface. Workers realised nearly five hours in weekly productivity gains using Microsoft 365 on Surface.
  • Using the combined creative capabilities of Surface and Microsoft 365, including Pen, Touch, Dial, 3D in PowerPoint, collaboration features in Skype and Microsoft Teams, organisations streamlined creative tasks, saving creative workers 27 minutes per day.
  • Enhanced teamwork capabilities using Microsoft 365 Enterprise powered Surface devices saved employees over three hours per week.
  • Using Microsoft 365 Enterprise with Microsoft Surface, business leaders reduced decision-making time by nearly 21% versus 18% for leaders using Microsoft 365 Enterprise on other devices.
  • Organisations reduced product development overhead costs by 11%. They accelerated time-to-market and reduced product development costs through better task prioritisation, research and development (R&D) collaboration, and improved data management and analytics capabilities using Microsoft 365 on Surface.
  • The mobility benefits of Surface combined with secure remote access features of Microsoft 365 Enterprise saved mobile workers over four hours per week.
  • IT saved two and a half hours per application provisioning request and over 25 minutes configuring each device. The combined device, application, and security configuration and provisioning synergies of Microsoft Surface, Windows AutoPilot, Windows 10, and EMS improved IT and user productivity.
  • The stability of Surface resulted in fewer incidents of crashing, while the number of password reset-focused help desk tickets were nearly eliminated using the self-service capabilities from EMS to administer password resets. Help desk calls for password resets were reduced by over 86%, while device and application performance-related tickets were reduced by 15%.
  • Security breach remediation costs were reduced by 80% and the number of annual breaches was reduced by 50%. Using two-factor authentication, Advanced Threat Analytics and Surface Enterprise Management Mode (SEMM), organisations cut the volume of breaches experienced annually in half.
  • The organisations reduced several third-party technology costs, devices, infrastructure and IT support requirements using Microsoft 365 powered Surface devices.

On the job with Microsoft Surface

With advanced devices such as the Surface Laptop 2, Surface Go or Surface Pro 6, running Microsoft 365, finance professionals can:

  • Take photos and notes, using the integrated Surface Pen and OneNote, uploaded directly and securely to OneDrive.
  • Stay up to date with the latest market trends, through an HD PixelSense touch display.
  • Give compelling presentations with Surface Pen and PowerPoint.
  • Answer client questions on the spot via seamless Microsoft 365 integration.
  • Run powerful financial and analytics applications thanks to 7th generation Intel® Core™ processors.
  • Share ideas from colleagues and clients in real time, negotiate tasks and agree on fees, using Office co-authoring, OneDrive document sharing, the Surface Pen, and Skype for Business.
  • Draft complex contracts on a specially-designed keyboard.
  • Stay connected and access essential resources with built-in long-term evolution (LTE) and Wi-Fi connectivity.
  • Work with legacy apps that run smoothly on Windows 10.
  • Get management approval and digital signatures, regardless of location.

To help IT leaders in financial and legal services exploit the advantages of the Surface family, CDW provides a range of wrap-around services that add value in important areas. An extensive range of maintenance and support services are offered by CDW, underpinned by tailored SLAs and delivered by accredited engineers with demonstrable technical expertise. Design services, including the build of a main image, are also available alongside pre-delivery asset-tagging, deployment support and delivery.

Download the free guide to Digital Empowerment in Legal & Financial Services:

 Or you can learn more by calling 020 7791 6000




[ii] The financial results calculated in the benefits and costs sections of the study were used to determine the ROI, NPV, and payback period for the composite organisation’s investment in Microsoft 365 powered Surface devices. Forrester assumed a yearly discount rate of 10% for this analysis.


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