Today marks the 109th anniversary of Bank of Baroda. A lot has changed since then. Ledger books, a pile of registers, calculation wizards etc. have become obsolete. Today, we rely on just one thing, i.e. Finacle, our software that lets us do anything we are authorized to do. Life in banking is easy, just like a cakewalk.
We have revolutionized the way people use their banking services. We have ATM services, cash deposit machines, passbook printing machines, mobile banking, internet banking, electronic cheques etc. to point out a few. We are foraying into an era that is anything but free (time wise). People want everything in split-seconds. They’ve got Siri to guide them into anything they aspire to do. From buying a hamburger to booking a flight, Siri has got us all covered. Facebook is keeping the world connected with just one click. Twitter is letting us speak on the issues that matter to us. Instagram is letting us share our memories. Snapchat is helping us to be either a dog or a Hawaiian princess. So, what is our Bank of Baroda doing to keep up with the pace the world is moving at?
Well, for starters, it introduced a pocket-free wallet app called Baroda M-Clip on its 109th anniversary, which lets you transfer money, make bill payments, recharge, make mVisa payments, shop, gift, link debit/credit card, see transaction history and what not! Bank of Baroda sure knows how to woo the customers of the 21st century. But is it enough? Is it really using technology judiciously?
If you ask me, I got one straight answer- NADA! BOB is India’s first international and the biggest Public-sector bank in India. But it is not doing just enough. A century old bank with base all over the world must have a potential to see the changing trends around the world. Bitcoin has been here for quite some while now. PayTM is giving a tough competition to the biggest banks. Even Snapchat is not shying away from giving financial services, since it introduced SnapCash. So, banks have no choice but to feel threatened. There are people who are about to take over the arena of traditional banking. Now, when I ask you whether BOB is doing enough for its 21st century customers, what will be your answer? Nada, obviously.
So, what can we Barodians really do? For starters, use our strength. Our strength lies in the large base that we’ve created all around the world. We have entered the remote parts of our country and yet managed to somehow touch the skies with branches in London and New York. We KNOW the people of this world. Yes, not just this country, but this world. We have got our branches even in California, the state which houses the Silicon Valley, the technology haven of the world. Silicon Valley creates what you can’t even dream of. Do we really lag in the resources to innovate? I don’t think so. Even if we don’t wanna outsource this part, we can sure learn a few tricks and tips from the Silicon Valley. Why go abroad for this, I say. Bank of Baroda has the capability of developing what the mighty Americans are doing, in Bengaluru, the Silicon Valley of India. With Indian engineers a huge hit in the Silicon Valley, recruit them here in BOB so that we can create a state of the art technology base that he world envies. Sounds dreamy, right? Hard to achieve? Nada! Anything can happen in this world, my friend. Anything. You just got to have that spark to do it.
I can safely say that banks will themselves become obsolete in the future, if not near future. Who got to the time to go to an actual bank and get a loan sanctioned? Maybe it will take another Mark Zuckerburg or a Steve Jobs to pave the way for the dreamers to create something revolutionary that will give banking services at customers’ fingertips. No physical branches. Just a database, that stores your money. A virtual bank to say the least. And we all know that the one who averted change, was the one that got eliminated from the competition first.
Here, we are talking about the future of Bank of Baroda in another 100 years. So, get your mind cleared of all the apprehensions; the RBI policies, the government rules, the borders etc. They will not matter. The world today is not walking the marathon. It is ‘sprinting’ it.
Drones seemed like a stupid idea to many. 3D printers were like a flying pony. But look, where have we arrived! A world that literally is a living example to the popular phrase- Nothing is impossible.
So, yes. my friends, nothing is impossible. This world has a place only for the thinkers, the dreamers and the achievers.
Wishing Bank of Baroda a happy 109th birthday. Rise like a sun and enlighten the whole world 🙂
A proud Barodian,