Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Administration Module

It is actually relatively easy to demonstrate a mobile banking transaction. To connect a phone channel to a banking system and to demonstrate the transaction being initiated by a phone subscriber is by far the easiest problem to solve in mobile banking.

Far more complex but much more important is to also provide robust administrative support for the mobile banking solution. This is an essential component to deliver a commercially sound and a production ready mobile banking system.

In evaluating a deployment ready solution one should expect to find the following components in a well designed Administrative module:
  • Support staff access is important as it is probably the biggest risk factor in the operations of the system. Statistics have shown that fraud is more often perpetrated by internal staff and the exposure is also much bigger. Well-designed systems should cater for defined responsibility matrix, with segregation of duties. Techniques like dual authorisation, limits and exception reporting should be available. Proper logging of support staff activities is important so as to ensure that activities can be tracked and audited.
  • Most of the administration activities are made available by means of suitable procedures. Systems should support standard procedures and workflow for the key functions (like registration of a new subscriber, renewal of a PIN, reversal of a transaction to name a few). In addition the workflow component should be flexible enough to accommodate changes and to add new procedures.
  • The tasks within the procedures should include Client support functions that would enable a client support staff member to handle queries, set new limits, change personal information etc. Support should be given to search the data by means of surnames, identification numbers etc. in addition to mechanisms to authenticate clients.
  • Administrative support could include the ability to raise interest and fees. To run reconciliation tasks, to change system parameters or to send communications to support staff or clients.
  • The availability of Management Information is critical not only to be able to operate a mobile banking system effectively, but also to be able to improve the service.
  • A well-designed system should cater for External administration functions. This would enable third party suppliers to possibly register clients or to pay commissions. It is preferably to have a defined interface to build customised access to the Administrative functions.
Administrative support is often delivered as an afterthought, or not based on a well-architected design. It is often inflexible, limited in its functionality, open to mis-use and expensive to change. It often does not provide sufficient management information support or caters for the exceptions. One should evaluate alternatives carefully on the basis of their administrative support, as this is usually the most expensive element to add or modify later.

1 comment:

Shri said...

Do you have any process workflow or process flowchart for a mobile banking system?
Would appreciate if you could mail me at shrihari.kurup@gmail.com