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How APAC financial firms can prepare for uncertain markets in 2023

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As 2023 approaches, Asia-Pacific financial services firms are trying to set their strategy amid highly uncertain conditions.

After a strong economic rebound in 2021, growth has moderated in a volatile global environment this year.

Inflation is still a pressing issue, having risen above most central bank targets. It is lower than in other regions and is expected to peak in APAC in late 2022. But as the effects of the pandemic wane, the region faces new headwinds from global financial tightening and an expected slowdown of external demand. While Asia remains a relative bright spot in an increasingly lethargic global economy, the International Monetary Fund only expects APAC growth to rise from 4% to 4.3% next year. This is much slower than the average of 5.5% over the preceding two decades.

Meanwhile, new age currencies, sustainability and talent retention keep financial services executives awake at night.

Though many of these challenges affect all providers, each will look to address them differently depending on their market position, model and differentiating factors.

Ruthless focus and execution

In response to these challenges, firms must ensure clarity of goals and focused execution. In 2023, you will need a laser focus on strategic goals to help senior managers maintain performance, despite the many demands on their attention. In such a volatile environment, it is easy to get subsumed in items that are not core to business and executives need to be ruthless about their priorities.

Your firm also needs disciplined execution of strategic initiatives – and of mandatory tasks such as compliance and remediation. Far too often, a small number of internal subject matter experts are spread thinly across a range of tasks, leading to service degradation. So you must be judicious in how you use valuable resources.

This enables you to spend the maximum time managing customers and delivering your customer promise.

Focus on skills

You must also never allow your firm to become complacent about expertise. Make sure all your workforce, including senior leaders, are sufficiently skilled in resourcing, processes, and technology. This will equip them to deliver the increasingly difficult tasks ahead and will be a crucial way to maintain competitive advantage.

The talent shortage continues and retaining talent, even after training and career development, is a great challenge. Demand for expertise continues to outstrip supply, particularly for specific skills in financial services, automation and data management.

To meet all these challenges, many firms will need extra resources to help solve short and medium-term challenges, such as in client lifecycle management (CLM) and post-trade services (PTS).

The right technology will be essential to help speed up processes – and full managed services can also be invaluable in helping you manage the workload and share responsibility for outcomes.

How Delta Capita can help

By supplying specialised teams to clients – with combined talents such as in CLM, PTS, project management, digital transformation and local regulation and culture – Delta Capita can help firms flex up and down to meet ever-changing demands. We can also ensure you get the region-specific training to suit your needs.

DC has 150 resources in APAC and can help in many ways, including:

  • Resource augmentation – we can provide resources at various skill levels to help solve short to medium-term challenges, including in client onboarding, vendor onboarding, change in circumstances, and name screening.
  • Managed services – we manage full services for clients, which means we can take a task off your hands and own the outcomes.
  • Technology – DC have proprietary technology that can help you speed up processes, such as management of onboarding and loan solutions.
  • Consulting – we provide a wide range of consulting solutions in APAC, including on crypto licensing and payment initiatives such as international data exchange standard ISO20022.

Delta Capita’s APAC franchise is headquartered in Singapore and has a presence in India and Hong Kong. This regional spread enables us to work in lockstep with clients to support you through challenging periods. It means you can pick and mix locations to suit your location as you hone your strategy and strive to combat increased cost pressures.

Though we are in a challenging economic phase, financial firms should see it as an opportunity to gain competitive edge by placing the right bets, staying agile and focusing on differentiators.

To find out more, contact us today. Book a free consultation to understand your unique needs and see how Delta Capita can help you to manage the economic peaks and troughs of 2023 and beyond.

This is the first in a series of blogs about the challenges and opportunities facing Asia-Pacific financial services firms.