NAB’s tech strategy takes next evolution

Four years on from a bold decision to launch a cloud-first, multi-cloud strategy, NAB is now looking at the next evolution of how technology will deliver great customer and colleague experiences.

NAB Group Executive Technology & Enterprise Operations Patrick Wright said the hard work of the last few years had put the bank in a good position to take the next step.

“One of the most pronounced decisions we made was to move as much of our company as possible to the public cloud, which I think was a pretty ambitious goal for this market,” Mr Wright said.

“As of today, we have 70.4% of all of our applications on the public cloud.

“We’re really quite proud of that. It’s been a huge cornerstone in delivering greater resilience and capability to our business that our customers and colleagues deserve.”

In that period, NAB has also reshaped its workforce from around 70% outsourced to just 37% today and Mr Wright said the bank would continue bringing capability back in-house.

“We made a huge call to in-source a lot of our technology and operations. In the next few years, I’d like to bring that down to 20% and continue to invest in our own people,” Mr Wright said.

“We’re very, very proud of our investment in Australia’s emerging tech workforce and we’ve started to deliver real capabilities towards our ambition to be Australia’s best engineering bank.

“We’ve heard a lot about the success of the NAB Cloud Guild and we’ll soon launch a Tech Academy, which will be used to onboard a hundred percent of our new employees.”

As technology and customer expectations continued to evolve, Mr Wright said the time was right to take the next evolution of the bank’s technology strategy.

“We need to keep simplifying. We need to keep innovating and we need to keep evolving,” Mr Wright said.

“The world has continued to change, technology has changed and so must we.

“The way we’re thinking about it is an evolution and we’ve got eight pillars that we’re anchored on,” Mr Wright said.

“Some of the elements that were a real focus for us when we set out in 2018 like cloud are now ingrained in the way we do things.

“We’re very focused on simplifying as much as we can all the way down to how we configure our servers, how we configure our networks, how we configure our computers.

“We want to move away from bespoke solutions for each business unit to simplified ways that we can automate across our business.

“We want 70% of our developers’ time being spent on business value creation and 30% on running the platforms.

Mr Wright said security remained crucial to maintaining customer trust.

“Clearly security is important and recent events have put a spotlight on that,” Mr Wright said.

“Security is in our design process, it’s not something that the security teams do alone, we design with security in mind from the outset.

“If we execute well in these eight areas, it will drive better outcomes for our customers and colleagues.”

With strong foundations in place, Mr Wright said it was pleasing to see the investment translating into better experiences for customers and colleagues.

“We have fully automated our QuickBiz Loan process for up to $250,000 in your account in just 20 minutes for small business customers.

“Our NAB Connect platform, which we’re very proud of, since we’ve moved it to the cloud, has four nines of availability, 99.99%.

“So we have some really good proof points that we think demonstrate we’re on the right track.”