Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group co-innovates with Google Cloud to unleash the next wave of digital banking services

About Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group

Macquarie’s Banking and Financial Services Group comprises Macquarie’s retail banking and financial services businesses, providing a diverse range of personal banking, wealth management, business banking, and vehicle finance products and services to retail clients, advisers, brokers, and business clients. As of March 31, 2021, the group had total BFS deposits of $A80.7 billion, a home loan portfolio of $A67.0 billion, and funds on platform of $A101.4 billion.

Industries: Financial Services & Insurance
Location: Australia

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Macquarie’s Banking and Financial Services Group uses Google Cloud to provide a leading digital experience for retail banking customers that delivers “higher order,” personalized, relevant products and services.

Google Cloud results

  • Enables engineers to focus on the bank’s core business rather than cloud management
  • Encourages experimentation by flowing traffic between containerized environments in seconds, encouraging learning and innovation
  • Supports multicloud strategy by enabling the bank to deliver systems and capacity seamlessly across multiple cloud providers

Develops digital banking services that meet changing customer expectations

For Macquarie’s Banking and Financial Services Group, delivering an exceptional digital experience to its customers is key to success in the modern financial marketplace. The multiyear transformation designed to deliver this has given Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group the agility, insight, and capability to meet evolving customer requirements and expectations.

Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group already has a reputation for excellence and outstanding customer service through the provision of personal banking, wealth management, business banking, and vehicle finance products and services to more than 1.7 million retail and business clients in Australia, as well as advisers and brokers.

The Group aims to build a technology-led retail banking operation that delivers the best digital experience possible to its customers. Achieving this objective meant looking beyond the traditional financial services sector to the experiences provided by some of the world’s leading technology players. For example, when redesigning its mobile banking application, the orginization looked to the technology sector for tools, practices, and strategies that would deliver a faster, more efficient, and intuitive offering.

We’re looking to use Google Cloud to build a set of higher-order services to provide exciting solutions for our customers.”

Richard Heeley, Chief Information Officer, Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group

A technology business at its core

Today, Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group is a technology business at its core. “We’re a digital-first business, and in a world where the digital experience is a defining factor for customers in choosing your brand, our offering has to be the best it possibly can be,” says Richard Heeley, Chief Information Officer for Macquarie’s Banking and Financial Services Group. “Our biggest challenge and opportunity is keeping ahead of evolving user expectations. Being able to deliver on them in a timely and efficient manner is dependent on the quality of the systems we have in place in the background.”

To become a digital bank, Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group elected to pursue a multicloud strategy that incorporates two public clouds—one of them being Google Cloud. “We’re looking to use Google Cloud to build a set of higher-order services to provide exciting solutions for our customers,” says Richard.

The first generation of this cloud strategy entailed automating the data center and significantly reducing provisioning times from months to minutes.


Watch the Macquarie Banking and Financial Services Group + Google Cloud video:

“We’re not using Google Cloud for our regular lift and shift workloads—we’re using it for workloads where we can have massive scale and we do not need to burden our developers with operations.”

Jason O’Connell, Chief Technology Officer, Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group

Working on a co-innovation strategy

Now, Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group is working with Google Cloud on a co-innovation strategy that covers functional areas such as home loan origination and technical areas such as application modernization through use of Google Cloud products such as Anthos and Google Kubernetes Engine. Anthos enables businesses to extend Google Cloud services and engineering services across their environments to modernize applications faster and establish operational consistency, while Google Kubernetes Engine is a fully managed service that provides a simple way for organizations to deploy, scale and manage the Kubernetes containerized application system.

Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group is aiming to complete its transition to the cloud by FY2022. Richard and Jason O’Connell, Chief Technology Officer, Macquarie Banking and Financial Services Group, note that under the multicloud and co-innovation strategy, the bank plans to work with Google Cloud to deliver higher-order services that provide cost effective and exciting solutions for customers, and to build platforms that bake in more scalability, resiliency, and availability to free developers to focus on customer experience. “We’re not using Google Cloud for our regular lift and shift workloads—we’re using it for workloads where we can have massive scale and we do not need to burden our developers with operations,” says Jason.

”When we work with Google Cloud, we want to not just use their technologies, but learn from them—how they run at massive scale with high performance and high availability.”

“Working with Google—an organization known for delivering high-quality customer experiences—allows us to unlock all the potential for delivering intelligent and highly personalized banking solutions.”

Ilona Oshana, Chief Product Owner of Digital Experience, Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group

A powerful and advanced platform

Ilona Oshana, Chief Product Owner of Digital Experience for Macquarie’s Banking and Financial Services Group, says the resilient, powerful platform and innovative technologies provided by Google Cloud help the organization meet its objectives. “All of the initiatives, ideas, and experiences we are building are based on the capabilities we have on-platform,” she says. “In order to be a truly digital bank and deliver amazing customer experiences, we must have the most powerful and advanced platforms. Working with Google—an organization known for delivering high-quality customer experiences—allows us to unlock all the potential for delivering intelligent and highly personalized banking solutions.”

Scalable data analytics is integral to the effective development of those solutions. Ilona points in particular to Macquarie Bank’s need to analyze and make sense of the unstructured data—such as rich media, document collections, and sensor data—that comprises 80% of all data worldwide. The organization then uses these insights derived from the power of data to present a personalized experience to each customer at each stage of life.

“For this, we need a secure, always-on solution that enables our engineers to focus on what really matters, and that is delivering amazing customer experiences at great pace to help us differentiate ourselves from our competitors,” Ilona says.

Google Cloud’s machine learning and analytics products are an important part of driving a better customer experience, and Macquarie’s engineers and developers are spending considerable time with Google teams to co-innovate on and build new solutions.

Anthos is central to Macquarie Banking and Financial Services Group’s strategies and Chief Digital Officer Luis Uguina recently described the platform as “the framework that is allowing us to be laser-focused in our core business. Regardless if it’s a private, hybrid, or a public cloud, we are going to be able to deliver our systems and our capacity in a seamless way,” he says.

Future-compatible digital services

The organization believes the capability to connect to various platforms with a digital, responsive, technology-agnostic platform is vital and, as new digital services emerge, that its digital banking services are future-compatible. With the right platform architecture, Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group is able to create more human experiences with technology that go beyond banking. Because its banking platform is based on an open API architecture, it is able to grant controlled access to its business services, enabling others to use, innovate, and build on top of them.

With Kubernetes managed through Google Kubernetes Engine, Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group has created end-to-end containerized environments and can flow traffic to a new environment in seconds, encouraging experimentation and learning. This was made possible through the flexibility of APIs. Using microservices with Apigee gives Macquarie access to a powerful, agile ecosystem to form service topologies and evolve services in isolation, so the bank can respond to the fast pace of digital innovation.

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About Macquarie's Banking and Financial Services Group

Macquarie’s Banking and Financial Services Group comprises Macquarie’s retail banking and financial services businesses, providing a diverse range of personal banking, wealth management, business banking, and vehicle finance products and services to retail clients, advisers, brokers, and business clients. As of March 31, 2021, the group had total BFS deposits of $A80.7 billion, a home loan portfolio of $A67.0 billion, and funds on platform of $A101.4 billion.

Industries: Financial Services & Insurance
Location: Australia