Financial Services

Breaking Down Artificial Intelligence in Financial Service Firms

Artificial intelligence (AI) has the ability to revolutionize a multitude of functions at financial services firms. Whether part of an overall digital transformation program or as a targeted deployment to improve customer service, increase profitability, or enhance information security, leveraging the latest advancements in AI can have a profound impact on a firm.

Artificial intelligence applications are capable of learning from experience, can adjust to new inputs, and can be trained to accomplish specific tasks by processing large amounts of data and recognizing patterns therein. The exploding interest in AI lies in its ability to rapidly consume and interpret large quantities of data and make decisions on the insight that might have been otherwise overlooked by older, static applications.

10,000 and Counting

At present, there are more than 10,000 vendors in the AI marketplace.  Some of which are providing foundational software or toolkits on which AI programs can be built. Other vendors are crafting applications that can be deployed by any firm and others are developing applications for specific markets. Broadly speaking, these AI software providers can be categorized into four segments:

  1. Industry-specific (vertical) AI applications
  2. Horizontal AI applications
  3. AI-enabling technologies
  4. AI and machine learning infrastructure

The layers progress from generally applicable technologies at the bottom to industry-specific applications at the top. Each layer may incorporate vendors and technologies from the preceding layers. The net result is that when implementing industry-specific (vertical) or industry-agnostic (horizontal) AI vendor applications, a firm does not have to evaluate, select, and implement the underlying components separately. There is a wide breadth of the AI vendor space and the rapid developments in technology. Financial services firms can select from a broad array of applications that best meet their needs.

AI for Transforming Customer Experiences

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Horizontal applications include technologies, such as chatbots, that enable superior contact center interactions. This also includes applications that can integrate with social media platforms to enable companies to monitor those channels for firm-related dialog (i.e., social listening).

Such uses are paramount to providing a better customer experience, which is a key component of any comprehensive digital transformation program.

artificial intelligence

Chatbots recognize and can process natural language, either spoken or typed, to provide instant, self-help customer service. These AI bots can be deployed internally in a customer support function. They can act as expert guides for representatives to accelerate access to information and to recommend additional products or services. Social listening-enabled applications can provide a firm with real-time insight into issues, sentiment, and trends that can affect their business interests. It can enable a firm to proactively respond to customer issues through social media platforms. Thus providing an opportunity to increase satisfaction and build brand loyalty.

With so many AI vendors and products, both cross-industry and industry-specific, it is difficult for many firms to know where to start. Some of these vendors and their products will rise to market leadership. Others will be absorbed into other providers, or simply cease to exist. Selecting the right AI solution is, therefore, of paramount importance. With dedicated practices in artificial intelligence and financial services, Perficient is well-positioned to guide you through the process from concept through implementation.

Learn more about the benefits AI will have on customer service, cybersecurity, and increasing profitability in financial firms by downloading our perspective piece here, or submitting the form below.

About the Author

David Willner is a business-focused information technology executive in Perficient’s financial services practice. His specialty is in transformation and data strategy programs. Before Perficient, he served as a managing director at J.P. Morgan Chase, senior managing director and chief development officer at Bear Stearns, and chief information officer, corporate comptrollers, at AIG. When he is not improving our client’s operations, systems, and data, he can be found playing guitar in his blues/rock band.

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