Why Is Testing So Crucial for Digital Banks and How To Do It Right?

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For years, banks have been the behemoths clasping the one economic element that makes our world spin: money. They have slowly been evolving over the decades to reach a time where services to their customers has transformed with changing economic factors. However, with the rise in digital technology, banks are several steps behind, mainly in terms of providing customers with innovative services that place emphasis on convenience and speed.

“Banks are trying to be cool and hip and build super cool digital front ends… But it’s like putting lipstick on a pig – ultimately it’s still a pig and the new front end is still running into an awful digital back end.” -Mark Mullen, Chief Executive Atom, Durham, UK

The most noteworthy innovation that changed forever the way banks functioned still remains the “automated teller machine”, or the ATM. This machine put an end to juggling even the simplest of transactions amidst a work-week, and empowered customers round the world to be able to avail basic banking services at any time suitable. What is most obvious about banking is the amount of mathematical calculation and technological implication that holds its services relevant to the ever-changing economy. Although there has been a steady-rise in the provision of digital services over the years, most banks still refrain from complete digitization. At best, they prefer to have an incumbent bank at their backend, as they continued to provide services digitally.

For a large part of the past few decades, certain banking institutions have enjoyed their monopoly of their services over the world, but that simply is no longer the case. There is a definite industry fragmentation, which the banks are only just getting used to. Fintech enterprises and social media accounts are now facilitating peer-to-peer lending and online services through blockchain’s Bitcoin and online wallets. Customers now expect better services and faster transaction and speedy loan approvals. If neglected, banks will soon be looking at the fundamental question of their existence.

What’s in it for the Banks?

Banks have plenty to gain by digitizing their services. The most prominent of all is of course the bracket of overhead costs. Emerging hybrid banks and other digital native banks are looking at potentially 60-80% drop in building the necessary infrastructure and 30-50% less expenses to maintain their services. Apart from overhead costs, the second-most noteworthy benefit banks are potentially looking at would be the determination of credit worthiness of the end users due to streamlining of the services using stringent security measures. In addition, these initiatives would help tremendously at a global level, therefore playing a key role in authenticating an individual’s identity and directly reducing fraudulent and criminal activities.

Why then, won’t the Banks just Step-up?

Worldwide, banks are facing massive pressure to increase their efficiency and flexibility, and subsequently, lower their costs. Even with genuine efforts, however, banks seem to fall short of expectations. According to a report form Gartner, this is due in large part to “incumbent application vendors” who “have been slow to respond to new requirements”.

The startup providers mentioned here are increasingly providing both: the needs of the customer as well as that of banks.

Next generation services mainly raise the need for channel integration, in order for the customers to complete transactions of any sort on the devices of their choice. Banks are converging to develop state-of-the-art products and services by launching innovation labs, often enabling alliance with FinTech firms. Owing to the stringent security measures that come with banking services, however, investment in these start-up enterprises promising to provide such integration services, must first be carefully scrutinized, and later be accordingly justified. Once the enterprises enter the banking fray, the extent of their banking domain knowledge and their technical expertise both determine how efficiently these financial technology start-ups would be able to provide banking services digitally.

Why Testing is Crucial

Due to the aforementioned digital shift, and the consequent need for digital services, banks are opening up to the idea of exclusive mobile banking. As a result, an increasing number of banks are challenging the way banking institutions have been operating for the past several decades. While ensuring that enhanced user experience and seamless transactions are being provided, the banks inevitably ran into technical roadblocks.

  • Owing to technical constraints, there was a definite difficulty in isolating failures, along with complexity while integrating with a third-party environment
  • From obtaining requirements to support with testing inputs, one such bank was unable to plan for test management tools and report the status of testing activities
  • There was a delay in connectivity to offshore as there were several issues pertaining to third-party integration
  • There was quite a challenge is validating structured vs. unstructured data, and correspondingly, to establish a testing accuracy for the data
  • There was now a demand for a definite shift to actively anticipate and hunt for malicious activity online, using simulation techniques
  • In addition to those factors, security measures also had to be taken strictly into account, all the more because of the mobile-only platform
  • As the initiative was from a commercial bank, there was a shortage of testing expertise that could handle ramp-ups and ramp-downs of skilled work force, as per project requirement
  • Specifically due to the fact that the bank is operating altogether on a mobile platform, there was a dire need for comprehensive testing services, in order to ensure application consistency cross-platform and among various operating system versions

How Cigniti Helped UK’s first Digital bank to Reduce Test Cycle Time and Achieve Timely Delivery.

Over the past few years, Cigniti Technologies has realized the need for not just Quality Assurance, but also for Digital Assurance. Cigniti Technologies has recognized the need for providing quality services digitally, to various businesses, globally. As an independent software testing services provider, Cigniti has been a strong advocate for the need to seamless digitize business services. This particular bank in question was looking for a testing partner who is capable of addressing their end-to-end Digital assurance needs with profound knowledge in the banking domain, and Cigniti fit the bill perfectly! The unique value proposition which Cigniti brought to the table was its capabilities around mobile testing, along with deep-domain understanding and alliances with a number of renowned test automation tool vendors. This proved valuable, as it neatly wove into the bank’s ‘App-only’ approach and also gave them access to the best of the breed tools addressing customized requirements.

Key Benefits

Cigniti Technologies played a pivotal role in assuring that the following benefits were achieved. To name a few, Cigniti Technologies:

  • Reduced test cycle time and achieved timely roll out
  • Improved the quality of the Mobile App by performing Compatibility Testing
  • Improved the quality of Decision Metrics services
  • Improved script code replacement and generation

For more information about Cigniti Technologies, please visit our company website www.cigniti.com and get in touch with our QA experts to avail our testing services.