Societe Generale has several accomplishments in deploying technology and in deriving benefits:
Societe Generale, France’s third largest bank after BNP Paribas and Credit Agricole, and the world’s 18th largest, is methodically becoming more data driven. It has employed artificial intelligence in a major way to bring in benefits to its customers and staff. It has been using technologies to make its business models more efficient and introduce new streams of revenue. It has strengthened its talent pools by adding more technical hands, especially data scientists with specialization in AI, and has been able to make use of functions like biometric and facial recognition, automated credit ratings and analytics tools for understanding the markets.
CULTURAL, TECH TRANSFORMATION
The bank has pronounced that it wants cultural and technological transformation and has created a sound foundation for gaining prowess in its businesses and functions. And becoming a data driven bank with responsible use of data is at the core of its plans. It has also underscored that the pandemic has indeed accelerated the digital transformation by making expeditious use of AI.
The bank has been using AI and data technologies in the creation of personalized customer products and services through customization, by improving responsiveness through being able to understand what customers are requesting through all channels, by automating to increase operational efficiency, and by enabling it to control risk through better detection. The bank today has a hybrid data lake, with use of public and private cloud infrastructures. It has also developed tools to improve data quality and allow appropriate access and sharing across the group.
Societe Generale started implementing a cloud-first strategy in 2017 and this had indeed helped the bank to speed up digitization. As much as 80% of its servers are located on the cloud and cloud is being made use of in automation and security. The bank’s objective is to use 75% ‘second generation’ cloud by 2025, including 50% private cloud and 25% public cloud. This will allow the bank’s developers to access off-the-shelf services – machine learning modules, databases, etc.
The transformation exercise also includes reskilling its staff to make them familiar with technologies like AI.
The bank has repeatedly stressed that it is inventing the bank of tomorrow through innovation coupled with responsibility. It envisages a bank that takes up the responsibility to serve and protect its customers, improve its operational efficiency and seize the business opportunities of tomorrow. The bank has developed a team – it calls this team transversal team – to adapt innovation to its local specificities and deploy digital capabilities. The team develops solutions on their own and helps other IT teams adopt these new solutions and ways of working.
300 USE CASES
The bank has more than 300 use cases of data in production, of which nearly 170 are based on AI. Some of the applications that the bank has developed using AI are:
SoBot chatbot is being used by retail banking customers in France since 2018. Accessible 7 days a week, 24 hours a day via the bank’s website and application, SoBot allows customers to obtain personalized answers to everyday questions (account balance, RIB, expenses, etc.) and to carry out banking transactions (one-off transfers, etc.).
Filae & Defi are 2 complementary solutions based on AI helping customers to better anticipate financial security issues like phishing. Filae, focuses on the fight against money laundering, targets suspicious transactions by analyzing each movement of funds. Defi focuses on the fight against fraud – falsified cheques, fraudulent transfer attempts, etc.
Societe Generale Private Banking France has created 2 complementary digital solutions – Synoe & Mon patrimoine. The Mon patrimoine solution gives customers a comprehensive and detailed view of their financial and non-financial assets, while Synoe offers a digital arbitration advisory solution tailored to the customer’s financial objectives and knowledge.
CAST, or compliance, analytics, surveillance tool, is an automated, multilingual analysis and monitoring service based on AI, enabling the review of all communications by regulated staff. This system monitors more than 30 communication channels.
Personetics is a financial data personalization solution developed by a startup and used by Rosbank, a subsidiary of Societe Generale, to foster customer engagement. Using AI, this platform provides specific and personalized advice to customers, based on their information and financial habits, in order to simplify their lives.
DIGITAL IN ALL BIZ
The bank’s objective now is to scale up and achieve a complete integration of digital in all businesses. This is proposed to be achieved by giving full power to alternative disruptive businesses such as Boursorama, the leader in online banking in France, and other entities, by industrializing its proofs of concept in terms of data and by pursuing the open innovation approach and by developing services through integrated Bank as a Platform and Bank as a Service ecosystems.