The Fides Multibanking Ecosystem: Q&A with Rod Gabriel, Head of Product Management & Solutions
Rod Gabriel has more than 15 years of experience working with leading treasury management systems, software and solution providers. In his role as head of product management, Rod drives the vision and strategy for the industry-leading Fides multibanking product portfolio and also manages its execution.
We chatted with Rod about his role at Fides, the Fides Multibanking Suite, Multibanking Ecosystem, and plans for the future.
How does product management work at Fides?
Product management at Fides is a mixture of strategy and execution. From a long-term perspective, upstream product management starts with developing a vision for our products and services — where we want to be heading. Next, we build the strategy that will allow us to achieve that vision. This work requires a lot of research and documentation with a focus on innovation, market and client needs to assure we are where we need to be today while preparing for the future.
Once the strategy is set, we move into the downstream product management efforts. This is where design thinking, which focuses on personas, helps us to define, capture and assess requirements to see what fits into the strategy, and how each item should be prioritized. Product management, requirement engineers, software engineers and quality control all working together is the key to our success in this area. I am sure that all product managers across the globe would agree that managing priorities is a challenge — sometimes it is straightforward, other times it involves discussions with sales team, clients and management. Steering is a critical piece of my job: making sure the product requirements, management goals and priorities are all in balance.
I’m also responsible for the support functions, such as market research, competitive intelligence and documentation which helps to improve the overall user experience. At Fides, we have brought our Customer Success and Quality Management teams under the product management umbrella to make sure that we deliver end-to-end outstanding results. Our number one priority at Fides is customer satisfaction and of course, this is only made possible by our people and teamwork.
Can you tell me about the Fides Multibanking Suite, and the newly-announced Multibanking marketplace?
The user-friendly, cloud-native Fides Multibanking Suite allows clients to securely access their Fides solutions and services — Fides connectivity, cash management and payments — from any location. Now, we are increasing our functionalities, reaching more banks with new channels and expanding upon that by offering trusted, relevant third-party offerings from Fides partners through the same web-based interface. Our ultimate goal is to provide a single and unique platform where corporate treasury analysts, cash managers, treasurers and CFOs can access all the tools they need to manage their day-to-day responsibilities.
In addition to our bank connectivity, payments and liquidity management functionalities, Multibanking Suite users will soon have a range of options to extend their use of the platform. These solutions could include everything from FX and money markets to factoring. We are working towards having a single sign on through which a client can navigate, execute these third-party operations, and use the Multibanking Suite features seamlessly.
Who will benefit the most from using the Fides Multibanking Suite and the extended Fides marketplace?
Anyone who is looking for global cash visibility within a single platform. And anyone who wants the ability to process bulk and exception third-party, human resources and treasury payments.
Fraud prevention is another use case: Treasurers who want to centralize payment processes and validation rules to address and prevent payments fraud without investing millions on ERP projects. For still others it may be the ability to accurately forecast without the hassle and costs of a TMS.
The Fides Multibanking Suite is easy to use, maintain and scale, without requiring dedicated IT staff. So it’s also the perfect solution for an organization that doesn’t have IT resources readily available.
What are some of the new product developments on the roadmap?
This year, our focus will continue to be on user experience improvements, including improvements to our user interface and adding additional functionality. Some planned developments include:
- Mobile sign off to facilitate easy, secure payment validation from mobile devices
- Grid functionality based on REACT technology, with several layers of filtering and the ability to further slice and dice views to fit clients’ unique business needs
- A transaction screen that will display automatically received bank reporting details such as end of day, intraday and real-time transactions
- Short-term forecasting
- Additional self-service functionalities
- More built-in features for payment fraud detection and prevention, including optimized role-based authorization and authentication
How do you prioritize feature and functionality upgrades and additions?
The Multibanking Suite roadmap and new developments, such as the Multibanking Suite marketplace, respond to market trends, based on our clients’ needs and feedback and our own team’s experience and long term goals. We use design thinking to determine the most critical needs for various roles within large and medium-sized enterprises, and then determine how we can best meet those needs. Our product steering committee reviews new ideas and prioritizes based on the strategy and need. The roadmap and product development are constantly being adjusted and updated, to keep pace with the market.
How do you measure success?
Customer feedback is our primary measurement, to gauge if a product feature provides benefits that our clients need and want. Even in the early stages of a product, there will be gaps and issues that need fixing, but getting that feedback from a client saying “that’s much better than the old version” shows that we’re on the right track.
What is your vision for Fides products, and what plans do you have to achieve it?
Fides’ overall goal is to reduce complexity for our customers. That’s the case today and that will remain the case in future. Helping clients with global reach, simplifying to make treasury payments and consolidating account information will continue to be priorities. I want to expand the competitive advantage that Fides has today and evolve along with our customers, to meet their needs and stay current with market trends. This also means that we must learn more from our customers’ needs and behavior and support them even better with smart services.