CBA plugs tech efforts
Commonwealth Bank says it wants to be a world leader in digital experiences.
The Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) has announced a digital strategy “refresh”.
Around 18 months ago, the bank announced it would pump about a billion dollars a year into its tech services. This week, CBA CEO Matt Comyn said that figure is rising.
“We're prepared to invest in our business where we see opportunities … we've got a whole ambition in this space and it's going to require investment,” he said.
The CEO pointed to CBA’s ‘Customer Engagement Engine’ as an example. The engine runs hundreds of machine learning models and takes on billions of data points in real time to “coordinate activity and actions to serve up to customers”, Mr Comyn said.
“The Customer Engagement Engine, in terms of throughput, is delivering about 35 million decisions per day, it's done in real time, in less than 300 milliseconds for each of those decisions,” he said.
“The scale of that is impressive, but actually what's most important is the value we can then serve up to our customers.”
The bank says it is gaining “unique insights” from its data, machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) investments.
“The power and benefits from at-scale analytical techniques that are now available, and the computing power - as you can imagine, as a financial institution, often we're working with very large datasets across the whole organisation,” he told tech news outlet ZDNet.
“The way we're actually leveraging it to deliver personalised insights to our customers, there are many areas of our technology which I'd like to be going much faster, this is an area - we make a change in our Customer Engagement Engine every day … just the scale, when we started the Customer Engagement Engine … we certainly didn't comprehend a few years later we'd be in real time getting through 157 billion data points.”
Mr Comyn said the bank has to be careful to maintain “explainability”.
“Clearly an area of emerging interest for regulators around the world... about how companies are using data… it's a big part of our technology strategy going forward,” he said.
The bank’s venture arm X15 this week announced the acquisition of Doshii - a cloud platform for the hospitality industry that brings together venues, point of sale, reservation platforms, online delivery services and other apps.