Mikko Rieger, SVP Consumer Management Services (CMS), Nets, explores how banks can find out the best approach to updating their infrastructure.


Banks are struggling with complexity and how to manage competing priorities.

The growth of mobile and now IoT payments implies that banks need a back-end infrastructure that can flex to accommodate new and diversifying payment-enabled form factors, including mobile devices, wearables, smart fridges and soon, connected cars.


This is creating pain points. If open banking and account personalisation services aren't provided on smartphones, then consumers won't use them, and banks won't be able to leverage these to differentiate themselves and create revenue. If tokenisation isn't accustomed to secure transactions initiated from mobile devices, then an increasing amount of payment and account data will not be adequately protected. And, if payment-enabled connected devices like smart fridges aren't supported within the back-end, an issuer offering may become obsolete once IoT payments become mainstream.


Virtual cards and also the existing card infrastructure enable these services. However, legacy systems are holding issuers back from responding fast enough to changing market conditions. Based on Ovum, nearly two-thirds of banks believe their payments infrastructure will need a significant upgrade in the next three years as the back-office domain becomes a key part of their digital strategy.


This is really a massive undertaking, and issuers are understandably wrestling with how best to approach it. To streamline the process and ensure that they reach the best answer for their bank, these are the key questions you should ask when developing a card, mobile and IoT payments infrastructure strategy.

Is outsourcing right for my bank, or don't let keep our infrastructure development in-house?

  • Can your overall consumer management system support the growing and evolving mobile and IoT payments ecosystem?
  • Do you have a large enough team of developers experienced in el born area to build your own infrastructure and implement it with minimal disruption to end users?
  • Will the significant capital expenditure be recouped quickly?
  • Are you positive about your technical ability and capacity to quickly create an infrastructure that allows scalable, value-added financial services that can be accessed on any connected device?


If a bank can answer 'yes' to all of the above, then there's no reason it couldn't develop and manage its infrastructure internally. When the answer to any of the above is 'no', however, outsourcing may be the best approach.

We're going to outsource our infrastructure upgrade. Should we go with a software-only or full-service provider?

  • Do you have to launch new products quickly to make sure faster creation of new revenue streams?
  • Would you take advantage of bespoke technical support in the development of new and innovative services?
  • Would you take advantage of informed regional support and a collaborative development process that takes your bank's individual needs into consideration?
  • Do you want to be able to guarantee your last users a stable infrastructure with high availability?
  • Are you moving towards a lean fixed-cost setup, so building and looking after a team to manage a provider and realise the upgrade isn't high on your list of priorities?


If the answer to any of the above is 'yes', then a software-only provider might not have the capabilities required to successfully implement and manage card, mobile and IoT payments infrastructure on an issuer's behalf.


We have identified a full-service CMS provider. What questions don't let ask them to ensure they're the best choice?

  • Do they have migration experience?
  • Is the solution flexible enough to adjust to future consumer demands and new financial products?
  • How smooth is the onboarding process – just how much disruption to our end users maybe there is? Can we migrate product by product instead of all at once, to mitigate possible risks?
  • Can the answer be expanded to cover value-added services beyond Consumer Management Services?


To learn more about the challenges and opportunities behind upgrading your card infrastructure, download our eBookPayments: Card vs Mobile vs IoT. Will it Even Matter?

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