This interview features Conga’s head of EMEA operations and strategy Charles Cao, who discusses how financial institutions can meet the demands of the modern-day customer.

How can companies modernise their revenue and legal operations for a digital economy?

Companies should consider deploying a contract lifecycle management (CLM) platform to modernise and optimise their legal operations. A modern CLM solution does more than capture information; it brings visibility, intelligence, and control to every aspect of the contract lifecycle. Such a solution enables intelligent authoring, automatically applies current business rules to agreements, and leverages workflows and approvals to make reviews faster and minimize risk. A CLM solution should also securely store and report on contracts once they are in effect and provide customer-facing teams with ample time to navigate renewals and enable accurate regulatory reporting.

Charles Cao
Charles Cao

Can you tell us three things the business of the future will need to change/adopt in order to flourish and continue serving their customer base?

As the world navigates the COVID-19 pandemic, the forced social experiment of remote work is becoming a feasible option for traditional office cultures. Many companies have announced permanent work from home policies and flexible work location programs after observing positive results in productivity and employee morale. Although remote work is not for everyone, companies are realising the cost advantages of fewer office footprints and hiring remote employees in lower-cost locales, as well as increasing business resiliency, effectiveness and flexibility.

The adoption of secure cloud-based solutions, permissions and access controls, and workflow and automation processes will create a successful framework to enable remote work for finance, legal, operations, and other stakeholders involved in turning opportunities into cash.

What kind of service does the modern-day customer want from financial services businesses and how can businesses develop these attributes? 

The modern-day customer wants a fast, efficient and high value service from financial services businesses. Business is becoming, however, increasingly complicated and global. In order to deliver upon their customers’ expectations and with thousands of agreements in effect, teams need broad insight across all agreements, as well as detailed information about individual contracts at the agreement, clause, or term level. In addition, the ability to enable contracting self-service reduces the time required to create new agreements with customers as well as reducing the load on the legal team.

What has been your key learning from supporting the financial services Industry over the years?

Financial services organisations must provide the best possible service to their customers against the background of regulatory change. Regulatory transitions impact everything from pricing and financial evaluation models to accounting and tax considerations. But the biggest impact can be on an organisation’s contracts as a fair portion of revenue and payments will need to change depending on the number of impacted agreements. For example, the upcoming change to the use of LIBOR potentially impacts hundreds of thousands of loan agreements, credit swap agreements and many other types of contracts. In these cases, digitising legal processes enables the organisation to efficiently and accurately meet regulatory requirements and ensure business as usual continues.

If you could be stuck in lockdown with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be and why?

  • Zinedine Zidane – Greatest football player ever and absolute legend. Would love to kick the ball with him
  • Leonardo da Vinci – would love to talk about the world with such a diversely talented person
  • Heston Blumenthal – One of my favourite chefs – I’d have the best food during lockdown!