What FinTechs really needâ€¦ And why it helps to ask them
Fintechâ€¦the realm of Open Banking, Data Sets, IOT, VR & AR Platforms, Data science, WCDI, sandboxes, Secure ITâ€¦..
All very Tech orientated, as the name suggests! So, when global Digital Transformation and IT service providers Sopra Steria teamed up with sector growth enabler FinTech Scotland to support the FinTech community, they made a fair assumption that the most valuable help they could offer would be access to UK banking systems as a development and testing environment.
Seemed logical, so the project to prepare this infrastructure entered the planning phase. However, before moving into build, the team took a step back and decided to present the initial concepts to a selection of Fintech MDs and CEOs.
Good job they did.
25% of Scotlandâ€™s FinTechs were interviewed, with only two of them giving the idea the thumbs up, and only one saying it was something theyâ€™d value enough to pay for. (note: it wasnâ€™t necessarily going to charged for, but the question was a great indicator of value)
So, the main assumption had been wrongâ€¦.a discovery that has saved a lot of time and money being invested in something that wasnâ€™t necessarily needed by the customer. Not that it canâ€™t be offered at some point, itâ€™s just not the priority or part of the MVP.
However, the in-depth interviews also unearthed some even more surprising information. When asked about the main issues and challenges facing their businesses, the feedback had a lot in common with start-ups and innovators in other sectors:
Finding the right people, especially IT specialists
Lacking a support network, experienced Execs and mentors who had â€œbeen there and done thatâ€
Knowing how to scale operationally
FinTechs are just like any other business and they face the same challenges. They are founded by entrepreneurs, not necessarily â€œTechâ€ experts.
Genuine, unbiased customer insight and feedback is vital at the very start of any innovation process, whether itâ€™s starting a new business or developing a new product or service. Under-rated and rarely done properly, it doesnâ€™t have to be an expensive or lengthy process.
In todayâ€™s agile world it can done in a matter of weeks, but can save months of wasted time and resource, and Â£000â€™s of investment.