Risk and Compliance Research Outlook 2020

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COVID-19 has delivered a sudden and pervasive shock felt across every aspect of our personal and professional lives. In financial services, we used to say that there were very few changes that looked like hockey sticks; that observation is now out the window. The Coronavirus will accelerate trends that had been simmering, rapidly bringing them to a boil and demanding strategic responses in months, rather than the years firms used to have.

Celent is committed to helping our clients assess the technology implications across the financial system. Risk operations have a crucial role to play in keeping financial institutions on an even keel during these turbulent times, but in order to do so will have to strengthen their own capabilities. For compliance operations, efficiency, automation/AI, and remote support, including cloud-based delivery, will be key. In financial risk management, we expect more use of next generation technology and emerging digital approaches to optimize risk modelling.

We’re in touch with financial institutions and their technology partners around the world and are developing a host of new perspectives, updated regularly, to help you make the right strategic technology choices in the medium- and longer term. Our clients have access to our insights through traditional ways – reports, blogs, Analyst Access – and new media, like interactive virtual roundtables and snap polls.

One thing is certain: none of us can go it alone. As you face hard decisions in the areas of technology and partnerships, Celent is here to support you. We can help you vet partners and technologies as you respond to government initiatives, the changing needs of your customers, and growing cost pressures.


Risk and compliance in the financial industry is at a watershed moment. While continuing to be heavily invested in legacy risk management systems, firms are seeking to use advanced technologies to unify siloed operations and data, derive enhanced insights from data, and overcome traditional trade-offs between efficiency and efficacy. COVID-19 is accelerating these demands. Celent sees three key themes in 2020:

risk priorities

The rapid pace of change associated with digital financial services has many firms questioning what will happen to their business models. We are entering a period where things are not business as usual — many in the industry are expecting significant disruption in the coming decade. Enhancing risk management capabilities will be an important factor in determining winners and losers in a digital world.

Celent’s risk and compliance research focuses on strategy and technology for optimizing financial and operational risk across the financial services industry. We cover regulatory and business developments in financial risk management including market risk, liquidity risk, and credit risk. Our operational risk research centers on financial crime compliance including anti-money laundering (AML) and know your customer (KYC), fraud, and market surveillance; governance, risk, and compliance (GRC); and risk methodologies.

In 2020, Celent will investigate the technologies financial institutions can bring to bear on evolving regulatory requirements; new models for sourcing and deploying risk and compliance technology; and how improved risk practices can support the business in the digital age.


Celent’s flagship ABCD vendor reports provide in-depth profiles and evaluations of the leading providers of risk and compliance technology. VendorMatch, Celent’s new vendor discovery tool, is playing an increasingly important role in our vendor analysis research. Celent also offers VendorMatch for direct use via freemium and premium service models. See more at https://www.celent.com/vendormatch.

Contact us for more information about what we have planned in Q4.

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