Digitalisation of risk management in the South African banking industry: a case study of a major South African bank

Gresse, Lambert Francois
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The research studies the impact that digitalisation has on banking in South Africa, how it impacts the inherent risk in the system and accordingly, how banks respond to those risks that digitalisation presents using digitalised risk response strategies. The fourth industrial revolution has meant that the way in which banks are differentiating themselves from their competitors and what customers are demanding from them are rapidly changing. This is distinct from previous industrial revolutions as it is characterised by velocity, scope and systems impact. Companies are being exposed to disruptive technologies and with it comes increased complexity and risk. Therefore, there is an apparent link between digitalisation and risk management. The research aims to understand the impact of digitalisation on risk management and accordingly how banks should respond to mitigate those risks. The research adopted a mixed method, case study approach. The research was conducted using online questionnaires and face-to-face interviews, with structured and semi-structured questions. The data collected from the questionnaires and feedback from participants in the interviews were then combined to draw a conclusion based on the findings. Key findings and insights were that banks should revisit the methods and models used to perform risk management, as velocity plays an increasing role in the types of risk that disruptive technologies introduce. Furthermore, the role that staff members, their skills and the tools that they have access to, to respond to risks, needs to improve.
A research report submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Management in the field of Digital Business to the Faculty of Commerce, Law and Management, Wits Business School, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, 2020
Risk management, Digitalisation, Impact, Likelihood, Velocity, Risk assessment, Risk response