How to get buy-in for open banking

After months of vetting open banking providers, it’s time to convince key stakeholders like the CEO, COO, and CTO that open banking is worth the investment. Here’s how…

So, you’ve found an open banking provider that ticks every box. Now, you need to convince those at the top that open banking is worth the company’s investment. But how do you create a case that’s compelling enough to secure their buy-in?

Keep reading to find out…

1) Align your case with business objectives

A business case - which will help you justify why your company needs open banking - is a powerful decision-making tool that emphasises benefits and identifies potential risks. But what’s the secret to a compelling business case? Simple. It should align with key business objectives.

If revenue targets are the key performance indicator (KPI) for this year, make it clear how open banking offers new revenue opportunities. For lenders, it could mean improved acceptance rates. For payment service providers (PSPs), it could mean taking back revenue from card fees.

On the other hand, if the company is looking at new customers as this year’s North Star, make it clear how open banking can help the company serve a wider customer base and expand into new markets - both geographically and feature-wise.

Next steps…

  • Gather insights from your company reports and product roadmaps
  • Build your business case leading with the why
  • Connect your case with business objectives

2) Illustrate your business case

Once you’ve built a business case, consider creating a roadmap. While it’s great to have the product vision in your mind, a roadmap will help everyone visualise it. And most importantly, it’ll help stakeholders absorb your big-picture plans at a glance.

Next steps…

  • Develop a roadmap covering key milestones, timelines, and strategic goals
  • Walk stakeholders through the roadmap, leading with the why again
  • For a cast-iron business case, tie your initiatives to specific metrics. A few could be: successful vs failed calls per API, revenue generated per API, and the volume of payments processed per customer.

3) Determine what motivates stakeholders

What do stakeholders care about? That’s the question to ask when it comes to securing buy-in. While facts and figures are important, executive buy-in isn’t just about numbers. If they’re excited about open banking, and we mean genuinely excited, stakeholders will be more likely to commit to the initiative.

For the CEO, this means…

How does this create disruptive innovation? IBM found that 58% of CEOs care most about disruptive innovation, not mere improvements. That means winning is a strong motivator, and you can leverage it to secure buy-in. How? By drilling down into how open banking could give you a competitive advantage.

For the CFO, this means…

What’s the return on investment (ROI)? When the CFO look at open banking, it’s an investment as much as it’s an initiative. This means they’ll have a strategic outlook. If the company pursues open banking, it should help to improve cash flow, top-line revenue and growth, and drive shareholder value.

For the CISO, it means…

What are the security risks? CISOs (and CTOs) will want to understand just how secure open banking is. Questions may arise about where your chosen open banking provider hosts their data systems, how they protect their infrastructure, and what security certifications they hold.

Next steps…

  • Look at your business case from a stakeholder’s perspective. What questions can you preempt and prep for?
  • If you’re spearheading an initiative to implement an open banking solution, you’re probably passionate about the technology. Show it!
  • Ask them to envision a situation where they lose something if the initiative isn’t implemented. Why? Because it’s easier to see the value that way.

4) Collaborate with other teams for support

To increase your odds of getting buy-in, get other teams on board with the initiative. We’re talking about non-executive stakeholders in other departments such as engineering and product. After all, these are the people who’ll work with the product every day.

Engineering

The engineering team will be working with the tech day in and day out, so they’re well-placed to help build out the roadmap. Moreover, they can ensure your chosen provider’s technology will integrate with your existing technology stack.

Product

Engineering and product go hand-in-hand for any successful initiative. It’s wise to involve the product team early to ensure…

  • Open banking aligns with your product strategy
  • It fulfils your most important customer use cases

Commercial

When speaking with the commercial team, revenue will be top-of-mind. So, how can you prove open banking’s commercial value? Enhanced product functionality is a good start (and a great way to get the product team involved, too). But for a bulletproof case, tie your points in with their most significant KPIs, like revenue targets or retention rates.

Looking for proof that open banking really can help support commercial KPIs? Check out these two stats…

  • Emma benefitted from a 267% MoM increase in monthly transaction value
  • Crezco increased their account-to-account payments by 71% YTD

Next steps…

  • Talk to individuals from relevant teams early on
  • Ask for their opinion. You never know, your initiative to leverage open banking might even tie in with their own goals
  • Buy-in trickles down. Meaning the more teams you can get on board, the better!

5) Introduce an outside expert

To excite stakeholders, they need to understand what the company can achieve with open banking. While you know why your company needs open banking, your chosen provider can explain how open banking will power your product innovation. By bringing their expertise into the discussion, you’ll have a stronger business case on your hands.

Next steps…

  • Request educational materials from your provider (i.e articles and white papers) to pass on to stakeholders
  • Ask if a personalised demo could be held in your office

And with that in mind…

6) Educate, but don’t overcomplicate

Educating stakeholders is important. But to do that effectively, you need to be on the same page as them. How? By speaking their language. In short, jargon and technical explanations won’t cut the mustard if you want to get them on your side.

Check out our jargon-buster guide to help you keep everyone on the same page.

Next steps…

  • When you’re educating stakeholders, avoid using acronyms
  • Keep your talking points concise - don’t overcomplicate
  • And most importantly, don’t always assume they know what you’re saying!

7) Give examples of how open banking solves key pain points

There are tens, if not hundreds, of examples of how open banking is being used. You can leverage these use cases to show stakeholders how open banking is relieving customer pain points. And more importantly, how it can generate revenue.

Take invoices, for example. Paper invoices still exist and thousands are going unpaid. The result? Small businesses at risk of bankruptcy. Where paper invoices paid by bank transfer take days, digital invoices paid by open banking settle instantly.

Next steps…

  • Start with the problem, then lead into the use case
  • Give a clear statement about the pain point…
  • … then describe how open banking solves it

8) Listen, and follow up with data

92% of CEOs agree that communicating about risk either makes or breaks a project. That means how you answer their questions could be the difference between securing a yes or no. The secret? Follow up on their questions with data-backed, concrete answers. For example…

  1. The CISO may be concerned that customer data could be shared without their consent. But it’s worth pointing out that security is at the heart of open banking technology, integrations are rigorously tested, and solutions like Yapily encrypt data, use SCA authorisation flows, and have security certificates like ISO 27001.

  2. The CPO might have questions about the level of control they’ll have over the user flow. You can point out that certain providers, like Yapily, take a white-label approach. This means they’ll exist behind the scenes, so your team has full control over the user experience (UX).

  3. The COO may be reluctant about the operational and compliance responsibilities involved in obtaining licenses. While, yes, obtaining a license can take up to 9 months, there are providers like Yapily who offer a faster and more affordable license that enables you to go-live in minutes.

Next steps…

  • Regularly engage your stakeholders from the start
  • Encourage them to ask questions throughout
  • Got abstract ideas? Give a bit more context to justify them

Got more questions? We’ve got more answers! Get in touch to learn how Yapily can support you on your journey. And if you’re still curious about the benefits of open banking, check out these 20 open banking use cases.


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