Article
Written by Mark Andrew
Posted on 29/06/2020

Foreign exchange: different priorities, the same end goal

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This article is the second in a series on the Foreign Exchange market, if you enjoyed this, but missed the first article, you can read it here.

As I started talking about in the first article of this series, speed really is the crucial factor when it comes to winning customers in the FX market. And this is no bad thing, it means if you can get your client onboarding process in order, then there’s plenty of business to be won.

The question is: how do you get ahead?

Who are the different teams or stakeholders when it comes to client acceptance in FX?
Client Acceptance isn’t just about the compliance team, it involves several others, all with important parts to play: sales, accreditation, compliance, credit, systems and others, in one end-to-end process.

Let's take a look what’s the driver for each of these:

Sales
The sales heads in your organisation are going to be the biggest ambassadors of anything that allows clients to get started and making trades. Client satisfaction is high on their agenda and in this market, it relies on being able to get new clients up and running as fast as possible, to get the best price (something crucial for SMEs particularly who are looking at FX as way to boost their bottom line).

Finance
The finance folk in your organisation are also keen to get hold of a slice of the action, in a market worth $5 trillion every day. The sooner a client is onboarded, the sooner they can be invoiced. However, keen to keep costs in check, they look to ensure that budgeted profit margins are met, the last thing they want, is financial penalties eating into that.

Risk and Compliance
If your customers can’t get accepted quickly, you’ll lose them to your competitors. But at what cost? With this team taking personal responsibility for any compliance lapses, faster acceptance can’t mean lax compliance, under any circumstances.

You have to strike a balance and automate the easy decisions to allow you to focus on the high-risk applications.

Fraud
The fraud and financial crime experts know that criminals will want to exploit those companies who are rushing clients onboard and not performing adequate due diligence, in the hope that they will slip through the net in a rushed customer acceptance process. 
A single case management system, with integrated fraud detection and intelligence, could be the missing piece of your compliance process puzzle.

Systems
The systems teams know that vendors can easily make promises they can’t keep. The last thing they want, is another ‘solution’ that ends up being an additional platform to maintain, service and for the user, log into. Even worse, a white elephant that isn’t embraced by its users.

Lots of suppliers say that automation is the key to unlocking revenue from new customers. But what use is automation if it brings internal implementation challenges and frustrates your sales teams? What the systems heads are really looking for, is an onboarding solution that is easy to deploy and scalable as your company grows.

Let’s be honest here. There are different motivations, but ultimately, guys, you’re all working towards the same thing, to make onboarding:
•    Faster
•    Safer
•    More compliant
•    More customer-centric

So, what is the answer?

A siloed approach isn’t going to get you anywhere. You need to think of your different teams as links in the same chain – you are all working towards the same goal.
Getting a slice of the action relies on quick client acceptance and onboarding, time is literally money. But buying extra data to perform these checks only increases your costs. 

There is another way.

A single case management system, built around and to complement your existing processes, can automate the easy decisions to allow you to focus on the high-risk applications… 

In the next article, I will expand on this, demonstrating how digitising your compliance will give you that competitive edge you’re looking for. 

If you have any questions or want to know more about onboarding for commercial FX companies, you can get in touch with me directly, by emailing mark.andrew@graydon.co.uk