Canada’s financial services sector has long been recognized as a reliable and safe institution. Largely dominated by the Big Five banks, the sector has traditionally outpaced other financial centres. Although recognized for their financial growth and stability, the established financial institutions (FI) have similarly been known as being slow to adjust to the changing landscape and evolving consumer demands.

Technology Shifts in Fintech

Canada’s financial sector was forced to adapt as new and innovative fintech solutions began coming to market in recent years and threatened both the stable customer base and profitability of traditional financial institutions. These institutions saw a shift in the market and a balance of power, leading them to make significant investments in their technology and offerings. A recent Canadian Bankers Association[1] report stated that in the past decade, the six largest Canadian banks spent a combined $90 billion dollars on technology, $14 billion of which was given out in 2018 alone.

These investments have proven to be worthwhile, as the same study notes 76 percent of Canadians do most of their banking digitally, while 23 percent use it as their primary method. Banking technology has drastically changed in Canada, and while we may lag[2] in fintech adoption compared to other countries, Canada has seen exceptional growth over the past five years.

One of these new solutions helping to drive change in the sector is cloud technology, where data centres and resources are available to multiple users over the internet. According to our 2020 Security Study, Cyber Resilience: An Evolving Perspective, 75 percent of financial institutions were using the hybrid model of on-premise and cloud data centres, indicating a measured transition to cloud.  

Benefits of Cloud Technology in Financial Services

Cloud technology helps financial institutions in a variety of ways, one of them being cost reduction. Since it is remotely maintained and upgraded, financial institutions no longer need to worry about managing data centres and can instead focus on their core capabilities.

One of the most important benefits to cloud technology is the ability to scale up and respond to the digital future. While physical retail locations and in-person banking will remain an option for Canadians, the recent pandemic has caused institutions to shift to limit face-to-face interactions. More than ever, consumers are taking a keen interest in the digital capabilities of financial institutions. As these trends and capabilities evolve and become consumer-facing, embracing cloud technology now will enable financial institutions to meet these future technologies head-on. Cloud technology provides improved ability to scale up and bring products to market faster.

Current Landscape and Cloud Adoption

The current landscape and increase in remote work demonstrate a further need for cloud adoption. Cloud technology has enabled business continuity for financial institutions s as many employees have transitioned to a work from home lifestyle. Employees at financial institutions have largely been able to access necessary information to continue providing services to Canadians in a fast and efficient manner.

These cloud technologies are being utilized by customers we interact with daily. Some of the products we’re seeing our clients leverage include Microsoft technologies such as Microsoft 365, specifically Office products as well as Teams and SharePoint for collaboration and organization while Intune is utilized for workplace management and digitization. Clients are also leveraging Microsoft Azure build and test applications on Microsoft managed data centres, fostering innovation and teamwork without putting a strain on an organizations network.

The cloud team at CDW will provide you with the tools and expertise to assess your current IT infrastructure, help you plan your move to the cloud and manage your on-prem and cloud- based infrastructure post-deployment. If you are interested in learning more about our capabilities, visit cdw.ca/cloud.


[1] https://cba.ca/fast-facts-the-canadian-banking-system

[2] https://fortunly.com/infographics/how-startups-disrupt-the-finance-ecosystem-infographic/

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