Earlier this week, PwC released its CEO Outlook Report in conjunction with the Financial Services Council (FSC) based on a survey of Australian-based CEOs across the insurance, superannuation, funds and wealth management industries.
The report revealed that 82 per cent of respondents are confident of growth over next 24 months, with 47 per cent nominating building or restoring trust as critical to their agenda over the same period.
“It’s fantastic to see there is optimism around growth, but there’s also a clear sense among CEOs that there are significant headwinds to be navigated in order to genuinely deliver on this positive sentiment, particularly around regulation, trust, and attracting talent,” said Scott Fergusson, PwC Australia’s insurance leader.
“Successfully navigating these challenges will involve doing things that are hard and potentially uncomfortable like genuinely embracing the regtech and innovation, seeking out and fighting for people with diverse talent and skills, and understanding at a practical level what can be done to rebuild trust.”
The top area of concern for respondents was a perceived increasing regulatory compliance burden, with 40 per cent indicating that the rapidly changing regulatory environment is increasing the risk of their organisation not complying with relevant laws and regulations.
Conversely, PwC Australia’s superannuation leader, Craig Cummins, believes that regulation can be beneficial if it results in better customer outcomes.
“Regulation and compliance requirements are not going away, if anything they’re intensifying, but that doesn’t mean they should always be seen as a burden,” Mr Cummins said.
“Enlightened organisations will see regulation as an opportunity to create value for customers and earn their trust. Now is the time for CEOs to challenge whether their organisation is doing enough to think differently about responding to regulatory demands and rising community expectations."
Mr Cummins said: "Embracing regtech solutions may prove to be a differentiator in that regard.”