Caixa is the second-largest government owned bank in South America and at a time of constant change, it is attempting to bring innovation to its clients. This job falls squarely on the shoulders of Osvaldo Bruno Brasil Cavalcante, Caixa’s CEO of Organization and Strategy
Leaders League. What are the biggest accomplishments of Caixa in the technology and innovation arena?
Osvaldo Bruno Brasil Cavalcante. Caixa made several structural improvements in the recent years, with the construction of new datacenters, enhancement in the quality of broadcasting links and an improvement in the bank’s processing capabilities. All of this built a foundation that not only acted as a support for the growth of our network, but also supported an increase in the transactions in all of our service channels, especially electronic channels, such as the internet and mobile banking.
How have these innovations impacted the bank’s clients?
The first gain is the availability of services to the client, not only physical services (agencies and correspondents), but also digital ones through Internet Banking Caixa and the Caixa app. Today, there are multiple communication links ensuring the clients will not be without service if an agency goes offline. In relation to data processing, we have a more modern and robust infrastructure, which allows us to offer more services, whether physical or digital.
How can a financial institution look for innovative solutions while respecting government regulation?
While it is impossible to move away from legal restrictions, this situation cannot halt the evolution of banking activities. The focus is the satisfaction of the client, who wants to act remotely in business and in everyday life. The less a client needs to go to a physical space, the greater the tendency to retain that client. The important thing is that the client feels valued. Along these lines, we always strive to think outside of the box, so we work within the regulations, but find something new for our clients. An example of that is the creation of virtual agencies, which are perfectly aligned with regulations and are undeniably an innovative step in the financial market.
How can innovation help banks to overcome the financial crisis Brazil is currently experiencing?
The key is to remain relevant to the client, as a true partner, helping them in the hardest moments. And innovation is the best way for an organization to do things differently, change the way it communicates and deliver proposals with value to clients who aiming to keep, strengthen and enlarge communication. Research, such as the Global Innovation 1000 indicate that 76% of the companies that invested in innovation during times of hardship, like the economic crisis of 2008 in the United States, achieved a competitive advantage when the crisis was over. Maintaining R&D efforts is an important way to try to emerge from the crisis with a better position in the market. As Einstein remarked, you cannot solve problems with the same mindset that created them. Therefore, it is of fundamental importance to be different, to dare, and to question the structures and methods established previously in order to create new ones, and advance in a new context.