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BANKING TECHNOLOGY | Staff Reporter, Australia
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Appian's low-code platform promise efficiency breakthroughs for APAC banks

Fresh from its success in helping Australia-based Bendigo Bank transform into a more customer-focused operation, Appian is looking to bring its low-code platform to more banks in Asia Pacific who need to deliver enterprise applications in a quicker, more efficient manner.

“We actually believe low-code is where the industry is going because it is all about agility, it’s all about recognising that the demand for applications is going up, the complexity of building an application is going up, yet, generally speaking across the globe, the supply of engineering talent is staying relatively stable,” said Michael Heffner, who leads the global financial services banking, capital markets and insurance industry at Appian.

“So the ability to create an environment where you’re visually configuring complex applications and you’re doing it in hours is really differentiating, and that’s going to help companies really compete on software and drive their own unique strategies to market. So that’s where we play in banking,” he added.

Bendigo Bank’s customer-focused transformation
Appian has been focusing on partnering with leading global banks, including HSBC and Barclays, and has completed milestone projects with regional banks in Asia Pacific such Bendigo Bank.

Appian worked with Bendigo Bank, which serves 1.6 million customers and has $66 billion in assets, in improving the connection between different parts of the bank’s operations, from retail banking, credit cards, lending, to institutional banking. Bendigo Bank, led by its CIO Andrew Watt, rolled out 25 customer-focused enterprise applications on Appian in a span of 18 months, which subsequently empowered the bank to provide a more cohesive and high-quality customer experience.

Together with 12 additional so-called citizen developer Appian applications that were made through the bank’s In Business Programme, Bendigo Bank’s enterprise applications emerged as Tier 1, critical customer-impacting processes in areas such as ATM management, credit card management, fraud management, disputes, loans, mortgages a and merchant services, amongst others.

“[Bendigo Bank] have been able to transform their customer experience by putting the customer at the center, not product silos at the center, of how they execute,” said Heffner.

“Our core value proposition is to help customers manage complex transactional life cycles inside and outside of the corporate entity of the bank more effectively. We often talk about that as driving out non-value-added activities, and the way we do that is that we attack the inefficiencies that exist today -- and many of the bankers will probably relate to this -- this idea of the transactional sticky notes,” said Hefner. “The way you track your activities, the way you monitor the work as it’s getting done -- this is everything from checklists to macros that are being run to offline databases. So the idea is how do we take those operational workarounds and formalize them in a transactional management hub that ties it all together, which is Appian.”

Highly accessible low-code platform
Outside of the Asia Pacific region, Austria-based Addiko Bank deployed earlier this year two new digital banking applications on Appian’s low-code platform that spanned lending and trade finance processes across the bank’s corporate and small-to-medium enterprise customers.

In November, Appian guided that subscription revenue in the fourth quarter is expected to come in at between $31.4 million and $31.6 million, representing growth of 34% and 35% from the year-ago period. Total revenue is forecast to hover in the range of $55.1 million and $56.1 million. For the full-year 2018, subscription revenue is expected to increase by 37% year over year to between $113.3 million and $113.5 million, helping push up the total revenue by at least 25% to an expected range of $221.6 million and $222.6 million.

Appian CEO and Founder Matt Calkins had attributed the brisk subscription revenue growth as well as the high subscription revenue retention rate of 117% to its platform’s reputation as the “most accessible” in the market. “More companies are finding us to be the fastest way to build and deploy unique software to run the business,” he said, with some Appian platform users being able to bring applications to market by up to 20 times faster.

Hefner said that aside from low-code, Appian also currently leads in three other domains: Process management and digital process automation, case management, and robotic process automation. “We know that the combination of all four of these, along with mobile, is really important,” he said, with Appian playing a vital role in the integrating the various, and often disparate, silos in a bank.

“Appian allows customers to create environments where their employees are collaborating more effectively in these complex transactions, but they’re also orchestrating and integrating organisational business rules, the integration of robotics and robotic process automation, which is central to our platform, data, analytics and documents,” Heffner added. “Now we’re already ready for the future, which we know is blockchain and digital ledgers, so we’ve already embraced those technologies and we’re ready to go. We’ve also embraced machine learning and artificial intelligence with various patterns that can help in the execution of the end-to-end transaction.”
 

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