There are issues in banking IT that aren’t important in other industries. If a bank doesn’t keep up with the frequent updates and patches to common programs, even an application like Adobe Reader, it may be written up by auditors.
It’s difficult for community banks, which typically have limited IT administration resources, to keep their systems up to date and running smoothly in one location. When a community bank has multiple locations, an IT manager can spend more time driving between branches than actually working on the systems.
That’s why banking IT software that enables remote management of systems is so beneficial for community banks. Remote management software lets an IT manager monitor, maintain and troubleshoot all the servers and workstations on a bank’s network. That means updating software and installing patches without having to physically visit each location. It also means remotely diagnosing problems and often fixing them in minutes instead of days. The more robust remote systems management solutions also have reporting capabilities that come in handy when it’s time to demonstrate regulatory compliance to an IT auditor.
In selecting a remote banking IT solution, banks should review the software’s performance record. Check that its patch management functionality is effective and consistent. Choose a vendor that is familiar with the banking industry and understands its compliance challenges.
Banks are in a perfect storm of having to do more, do it better and do it with less. Software patches can be especially problematic because they sometimes disrupt a community bank’s core processing applications. That’s why it’s advisable to have a test group made up of several devices across branches that tests patches before rolling them out. Remember that Microsoft, for example, doesn’t test its patches for a bank’s teller or loan systems.
As the cost of technology continues to decrease, and stricter, more complex banking regulations are put into place, automated remote banking IT solutions are becoming a necessary part of community banks’ IT infrastructure.