Data and analytics facilitate better financial experiences

  • 7M Private customers
  • 550K Corporate customers
  • 18+ Anti-money laundering models

Customer experience in banking is an important part of building trust and loyalty.

Trust requires honesty, integrity, and transparency. To gain your trust, organizations must act in your best interest, be accountable, and be competent. As one of the most important factors consumers consider when selecting financial products, banks rely on consumer trust to attract depositors and sell financial products.

For Swedbank, trust means creating a sound, effective corporate culture based on governance and a commitment to make customers’ financial lives easier. As a modern bank with over 7 million private and over 550,000 corporate customer relationships, Swedbank aims to empower people and businesses to create a better future.

“We’re a socially responsible bank, as well as a socially important bank,” says Sead Pašalić, chief product owner for group business intelligence infrastructure at Swedbank. “We help society to be more sustainable and more secure. We want to enable both private and corporate customers to achieve their goals.”


Banking customers demand security, trust, and compliance 

Digital banking brings new channels for engagement and financial services offerings. Financial providers can differentiate themselves in a competitive space with superior online banking experiences, including expense tracking, online bill pay, investment portfolio transaction management, and loan applications and approvals.

“We’re really trying to be on the cutting edge when it comes to the customer experience,” says Pašalić. “We make the interaction easy. You get immediate financial service when you log in, with services tailored to meet your needs.”

Swedbank is future-proofing its analytics and data ecosystem through a robust, scalable, and flexible foundation for its many critical services.

Data becomes vital when offering new financial services features and products to Swedbank consumers.

For an international financial services institution like Swedbank, it's crucial to maintain compliance with the latest Swedish and European Union regulations. Analytics and data are deeply rooted in Swedbank’s customer management, compliance, and anti-money laundering (AML) efforts, which support the bank's vision to create a financially sound and sustainable society.

“We have the responsibility to make sure that the data we store is compliant and secure, and that we have frameworks around how we integrate that data,” says Pašalić. “Then, we can proliferate that data across the enterprise.”

The data created, processed, and analyzed supports the move to digital banking. “If we talk about omnichannel management, all that data from those channels integrates with our data warehouse or data lake and will be utilized for operational or analytical purposes by our business stakeholders,” he says.

Compliance and consumer trust go together. “We do all the regulatory reporting based on data,” says Pašalić. “We primarily want to be compliant and make our customers feel safe. It’s very important that everything we do before regulatory reporting is done compliantly.”

Caring for consumers comes with security, trust, and compliance responsibilities.

Analytics support AML and countering terrorist financing (CTF)

Money laundering and terrorism not only harm society but also damage the stability and reputation of the financial sector. It’s in the best interest of both the industry and society for financial institutions to take all reasonable measures to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing. This includes performing advanced analytics for AML/CTF, fraud, and risk.

Since criminals may use financial services to launder money to fund illegal activities, proper know-your-customer (KYC) practices are central. Customer knowledge helps banks better identify usual activity. Pašalić and the group business intelligence (BI) infrastructure team equip Swedbank’s anti-financial crime unit with information derived from the Teradata platform. The anti-financial crime unit can then model data and build analytical use-case applications. 

“We’ve sharpened our processes, and those processes are directly connected to AML processes and models,” explains Pašalić. “We’re up to more than 18 different models. We use the data within Teradata VantageCloud on Azure and our ecosystem to create features. Those features are used by anything from fraud detection to suspicious-behavior models. For that to work, we need to make sure data is ingested, integrated, available, and accessible from VantageCloud.”

Accessible and flexible information technology (IT) environments not only support secure digital channels and assist in regulatory compliance, but also combat money laundering and terrorist financing.

“With the business stakeholders, we develop and train models and do exploratory processes and activities,” says Pašalić. “Then, the business stakeholders use the scoring for actual monitoring.” 


VantageCloud on Azure modernizes the IT stack to streamline business processes

Data harmonization and integration drive innovation faster to stay ahead of rapidly changing markets. The VantageCloud analytics and data platform supports Swedbank’s transformation and future-proofing technology strategy.

Modernization simplifies Swedbank’s tech stack to rapidly roll out new levels of automation. Accessible data supports Swedbank’s proficiency levels, allowing users to bring their preferred analytics to build, test, and model across the entire bank.

“The level of automation is something that we want to have in place for the entire bank—not just for the data scientists, citizen data scientists, data engineers, and software engineers working on AML processes and customer channel management, but also for the business analysts performing risk modeling or steering and controlling personnel who are running the bank,” describes Pašalić. VantageCloud on Azure reduces complexity and simplifies Swedbank’s tech stack to seamlessly manage data in a safe environment.

According to Pašalić, reducing Swedbank’s IT complexity accelerates business velocity and supports regulatory needs. “Regulators don’t sleep,” he says. “They’re constantly sending new updates and requirements. Having readily accessible, quality data is a must. Regulators don’t want an aggregated report. They want subsets of data. That data needs to be accurate and something all our organizations within Swedbank can present. It needs to be the same result, and we need to be able to explain why we've made certain decisions or taken certain actions.”

Opportunities for simplifying complexity in the cloud 

Swedbank’s cloud journey will further consolidate data and eliminate silos by making use of low-cost object storage. “We’ll be able to separate compute and storage and begin to use native object storage with Azure Blob to get more out of the data ecosystem,” explains Pašalić.

“Future-proofing is our end goal,” he continues. “Having a resilient and sustainable platform—where we can seamlessly go into next-generation software delivered as a service—is what we want to achieve. Going to the cloud with VantageCloud on Azure, where we can achieve flexibility, will support our business stakeholders by delivering functionality they seek.”

With Teradata, Swedbank sees unprecedented performance, accuracy, and efficiency to meet regulatory demands, support AML efforts, and earn consumer trust. By improving the performance, strength, and efficacy of its data platforms, Swedbank empowers the people and businesses it serves to create a better future. 

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