Understanding R&D in the financial and insurance sectors
We may not think of the world of finance or insurance as being pioneering or innovative however with the growth of online payments for more and more transactions the role of cash and the bank is decreasing.
To facilitate these transactions requires the use of complex Financial Technology which continues to evolve. It has become the norm to pay for items, journeys and experiences with the touch of a button on our smartphones. We take it for granted that such transactions will be protected from fraud and that we can trust the technology.
Such innovation within the financial sector works alongside the need for greater regulation. Since the financial crisis of 2008 many financial institutions have been creating new technologies to help them comply with the strict post-crash rules imposed by the Government. Such technologies assist companies in complying with onerous regulations through automated systems, thereby freeing up the time and resources of staff.
Examples of problems to be solved through R&D within this sector
- How to extract the exact data required through automated tools using advanced data interrogation techniques
- How to comply with the constant process and data requirements set by the Government and regulatory bodies without wasting manpower hours
- How to update and prolong the lifespan of existing systems
- How to best use the capabilities of new technology such as cloud systems to improve efficiency
- How to develop quick and effective processes using algorithms and embedded technology
- How to teach machines to perform processes previously performed by humans
Examples of what constitutes R&D in these sectors
The HMRC test as to whether a Company is performing R&D is whether there is ‘appreciable improvement’ in a situation as a result of ‘addressing a scientific and technological uncertainty’.
- Innovating new data extraction systems within banking to reduce human error and long-winded processes
- Developing apps and sensors to test driver safety for insurance premiums
- Renovating existing systems to update their capabilities in line with current requirements
- Creating a system that can predict future spending patterns
- Testing the boundaries of security processes in relation to payments and banking
- Creating a payment platform that integrates with social media to send cash to friend