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The future is tilting towards a hybrid cloud model, Tejas Mehta, RBL Bank

Future is tilting towards hybrid (On-prem + Cloud) setup to cater to high demand in a quick succession and manage long term infra on on-prem to control cost

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Edited Excerpts :

How is RBL Bank helping customers deliver relevant business outcomes through the adoption of technology
Since the onslaught of Covid-19, various work from home technologies have really enabled the business and the Bank to serve its customers continuously, in these difficult times. Advanced analytics, intelligent process automation and digitization of customer facing products and touchpoints, have led to many innovative solutions to serve our customers better in a virtual way. The simple and collaborative platforms have enabled business and IT to engage in a seamless way, to quickly turnaround during customer crisis times. Single KYC as a technology, has helped customers seamlessly move from one banking product to another without re-validating their identity. 

AI initiatives undertaken by RBL Bank. Please mention functions and departments which are actively using either AI or AI-enabled solutions/products, etc.?
AI & AI based services are adopted by various verticals within the Bank from consumer banking to HR, where the solution is provided with analytics. Within the Bank, there is a designated function which deals with business analytics; but within the technology vertical too, we are in the process of implementing AI to adopt early warnings to avoid major breakdowns. Real-time monitoring links will help us improve our architecture to make it sturdier. We also use AI in the contact center to assist agents with 360-degree customer details, custom solutions and help the business cross sell/ upsell.

Kindly share your point of view on the current scenario of IT infrastructure in Banks and its future
With the prolonged Covid-19 situation, hybrid working will become a norm if not remote forever. However, organizations have by now built scalable robust infrastructure to move from hybrid to full remote which was not so easy pre-pandemic time. This will sort of become a norm for many years.

Organizations which did not give much importance to the digital journey in the past, are now forced to adopt. There is a clear uptick in digital transactions, resulting in a sudden demand in expansion of IT infrastructure rapidly.

Future is tilting towards hybrid (On-prem + Cloud) setup to cater to high demand in a quick succession and manage long term infra on on-prem to control cost. I foresee large enterprises moving away from legacy systems and services and adopting new age solutions such as microservices, docker containers, No-code platforms, HCI and Analytics. With security concerns hovering always, a large part of the Infra budget is being spent on security related services or products.

Please share some major achievements of the company under your leadership.
Last year was full of deliveries, taking quicker decisions & expedited deliveries.

One of the major achievements I must share is that we moved the Bank from physical to remote in a matter of 10 days when the Covid-19 crisis in March 2020 started. Even before the lockdown was announced across India, we had already enabled majority of our workforce to work fully from home. It was an extremely well-coordinated team effort. 

Sighting the crisis to continue for a long time, we made several changes to our infrastructure to change the way we worked in the pre-covid times. Focus was how to enable “Work anytime anywhere” in a secured and seamless manner and by offering click to call collaboration within the organization. We migrated our messaging and collaboration platform to cloud in a span of 45 days which offered the greatest advantage of connecting each other from home – a need of the hour during the pandemic and remote working. 

We upgraded our VPN infrastructure to support remote working for the entire organization anytime now or in future, moved our proxy to a cloud proxy to handle internet-based traffic outside the core network thus reducing bandwidth and capacity needs.

We refreshed the Bank’s backup and restore technology to implement continuous faster backups and restored with simplistic backup policies over traditional policies. 

Benefits

  1. Few of the greatest advantages of moving messaging and collaboration to cloud is that one does not have to worry about scalability, capacity, hardware investment or upgrades, maintenance, OS & Application upgrades, support worries etc. 
  2. Cloud based Proxy & WAF solution helped us in decongestion of network traffic especially when the whole of the Bank is operating out of home, keeping security in check.
  3. Gone are the days when one had to worry about VPN capacity as the pandemic forced organizations to run remotely for months.

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