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Scotiabank Jamaica's President and CEO David Noel

Scotia Group sees dramatic uptick in online transactions

Scotiabank Jamaica's President and CEO David Noel

Scotia Group Jamaica Limited says it has been using the unprecedented circumstances surrounding COVID-19 as a learning experience for their operations. This they anticipate will place greater emphasis on digital transformation within the company and, by extension the wider Jamaica.

Scotiabank Jamaica’s headquarters in downtown Kingston, Jamaica.

“We have learned a number of things from working from home. In some instances we have seen productivity increase because it’s much easier to move around digitally than to do so physically,” Dr Adrian Stokes, senior vice-president and head of insurance and wealth management, told a Jamaica Observer Business Forum held at the newspaper’s head office in Kingston, on Wednesday last (July 15).

“[The pandemic] has given us an opportunity to explore that medium through which we can improve overall access to our team members and our customers. Notwithstanding, there are important controls that you have to make sure you strengthen when you work remotely, to ensure that from a privacy perspective you’re protecting your customers’ information. It is definitely one of the learnings that we plan to build on going forward,” he continued.

“One of the huge opportunities that the pandemic has presented is the realisation that there are other ways to do transactions than to be going into a someone.”

– Scotiabank President and CEO, David Noel

Audrey Tugwell Henry, retail banking executive vice-president, then informed that employees completed a mandatory work-from-home training programme.

“The work-from-home training programme covered all the usual privacy issues that apply everywhere in the office which now apply to work from home. We also have very direct and explicit protocols around working from home and thankfully we have had no issues. The investments that we made in technology support working from home right across the board. Our intention is to make sure that as a bank our response to this pandemic proves that Scotia Bank really is ‘For every future’,” she told the Observer Business Forum.

Scotiabank President and CEO David Noel

David Noel, president and chief executive officer, indicated that while there is a misconception that Jamaicans haven’t embraced digital, only less than 10 per cent of all transactions are done at the bank’s branches.

“One of the huge opportunities that the pandemic has presented is the realisation that there are other ways to do transactions than to be going into a someone. We have a tremendous responsibility in our organisations to ensure that we are making the investment in our digital infrastructure so that every Jamaican who wants to be able to make payment digitally has access to the payment network and the financial system. Going forward Jamaica can’t afford to lose this progress that we have moved towards digital, for we can have a much more efficient, productive and safer Jamaica if we can have transactions being done digitally.”

–Abbion Robinson