Chief Commercial Officer, SimCorp
Connect with Jochen on LinkedIn
Head of Enterprise Innovation, BNY Mellon
Connect with Hans on LinkedIn
Read the article and learn about:
- The perceived obstacles to industry innovation
- How buy-side expectations have shaped innovation programs
- Leveraging innovation to achieve business outcomes
- The role of human emotion and change in addressing innovation
In this latest Journal Q&A, SimCorp’s Chief Commercial Officer, Jochen Müller talks to BNY Mellon’s Hans Brown, who joined the bank in 2020 as Head of Enterprise Innovation. The interview uncovers some of the obstacles buy-side firms face in prioritizing innovation on their firms’ agenda, sharing best practice approaches to innovation, unearthing how industry expectations have evolved, and revealing the significance of human emotion and change, in achieving innovation.
Jochen Müller: Thank you for joining me Hans. Since you arrived at BNY Mellon, you’ve taken on an interesting role as Head of Enterprise Innovation. Can you tell us about this role?
Hans Brown: The role is about helping to accelerate our culture and process of innovating and delivering excellence in everything we do for the enterprise. In other words accelerating an ‘innovation everywhere’ construct. Not only today but with an eye toward the future, to ensure we continue to be there for our clients today.
My goal is to provide the frameworks and environment that foster this “innovation everywhere” construct, both from a cultural perspective, as well as from a technology perspective. And part of the way that happens is to encourage disciplined, rapid execution and hypothesis validation in all that we do. At least to the extent of the known unknowns, and making sure that the proposed change/product or service hypothesis is both desired, relevant and can be consumed by the market.
Innovation needs to happen everywhere and on all levels, to be consumable and adopted at scale. This happens when the physical environment and the technology ecosystem and product leadership all co-exist and collaborate at speed. We’re constantly obsessed with making every process, product, and interaction free of friction for the client and our operations team as well. This involves collaborating extensively with our clients, leveraging techniques such as client journey mapping, design thinking, human centered design among many others, in order to do this at scale and at speed.
Our digital services and solutions across the enterprise are geared to address pain points and opportunity areas, as well as market expansion. We therefore think of innovation as rubber hitting the road; you know you’ve done well when a client can get their articulated (and sometimes unarticulated) outcomes in a manner that is relevant to them and in the in the most efficient, frictionless way possible. Innovation done right enables client outcomes and feels natural.
Jochen Müller: You mention collaboration with the client, that’s an important element in driving innovation that matters. The dilemma that we know our clients face, especially larger ones, is that they are confronted by multiple priorities, whether it is capital preservation, operational resilience, transparency or governance, to name a few. While innovation has grown to become far more than just a buzz word, in a recent client poll we saw that over 30% cited competing resources as a challenge to adopting innovation.
With internal competition for budget and resources, how should firms approach innovation and ensure it is top of their firm’s agenda?