For a long time, conversations about artificial intelligence and technology have been met with some scepticism and fear of what machines will be capable of.
But machines have been replacing human workers for centuries now, whether it’s to increase speed, avoid dangerous working conditions or reduce costs. While this has been the general trend for a while, the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic accelerated it exponentially.
As companies scrambled to find safe and effective ways to operate mid-lockdown, technology stepped in to fill the gap. Chatbots replaced call centre staff who couldn’t work from home. More consumers than ever turned to digital banking services rather than visiting their local branch.
Post-pandemic, it’s likely that some job roles will change for good. But while some businesses will see it as an opportunity to permanently reduce headcount, others are thinking smarter and looking to how technology can allow them to do more with less.
The challenge ahead
In the wake of the financial crisis, the challenge for compliance officers was finding skilled resource to get standards up to scratch. Compliance budgets increased and resource was made available, with senior leaders concluding the risk of regulatory action simply wasn’t worth scrimping on.
Cut to 2021, and businesses are still facing many of the same risks they were in 2008 – increased consumer vulnerability, an uncertain economic future and intense regulatory scrutiny.
They’ll still need that skilled resource. But instead of generous purse strings, it’s likely that compliance officers will be under pressure to keep costs under control this time around. The only way to balance budgets while also managing risk is to invest in tech.