3 Questions with Mark Geremia of Nuance Communications

FintekNews is pleased to offer our readers our “3 Questions” column, where we chat with a thought leader within a unique sector of fintech and ask them to answer just 3 questions for our audience in their vernacular. This week, we’d like to introduce you to Mark Geremia of Nuance, which leads innovation in conversational AI, making intuitive, award-winning technology that adapts to each business and every unique situation.

NAME: Mark Geremia
VP General Manager, Dragon Professional and Consumer

What does your firm do/offer within the fintech sector?

Nuance Communications is the pioneer and leader in conversational AI innovations that bring intelligence to everyday work and life. Our voice-powered solutions, including Dragon Speech Recognition, help professionals in countless industries, including financial services work better, faster, and smarter by interpreting their words and transforming them into text and commands to create more detailed, compliant documentation, automate workflows, or short-cut repetitive documentation tasks.

We hear a lot today about Artificial Intelligence (AI), machine learning, deep learning, etc.  Many do not realize that speech recognition was one of the first – and remains one of the largest – beneficiaries from these technologies.  Dramatic advances in AI-powered speech recognition solutions enable financial professionals the ability to capture client conversations with immediacy and accuracy, update their CRM systems, and quickly deploy standardized form-based templates and boilerplate language – all by voice.  In short, our solutions support the crucial, if somewhat unglamorous role of creating timely, accurate and standardized financial documentation; helping financial service professionals improve documentation productivity, accuracy and compliance, and improve client service.

What area/s of fintech do you believe will grow the most in the coming 5 years?

We’re seeing the shift towards digital transformation within many of the industries we work with, including financial services.  Perhaps unsurprisingly, we believe voice-enabled technology that helps financial professionals capture and document client conversations, quickly disseminate important documents and more fluidly interact with their Customer Relationship Management and Investment Research (IR) platforms will be a huge growth driver.   The growth of consumer devices like mobile tools and smart speakers continues to drive demand for voice-powered solutions across the enterprise.

Five years out, consider the possibility of intelligent voice-enabled assistants that will proactively alert advisors to potential conflicts in the suitability of a client’s investment based on their risk tolerance profile, or alerts within documentation systems that remind advisors to include a particular disclosure to accompany a specific investment.  Virtual assistants that are trained against massive amounts of domain-specific expert documentation are already emerging in other fields.   There is no reason these types of tools will not continue to emerge and help financial advisors and their firms deliver heightened value to clients as well.

How do you feel financial professionals and their firms are adapting to the facet of fintech that your company operates within?

From the research we’ve conducted, the administrative burden on financial advisors and their firms continues to grow, as reporting and paperwork demands increase. Couple this with a changing environment, where clients expect more personalized services, and it’s not surprising that financial professionals want agile tools to help meet changing expectations.  Financial professionals, like many others, need solutions that can help them not only manage back-end tasks like documentation, but also front-of-the house activities, such as the customer experience.

In this changing environment, financial professionals realize the importance of capturing the immediacy of client conversations and tying those conversations back into the CRM system so that an auditable trail of the entire client life-cycle is available.  This can be especially critical if an advisor is acting as a fiduciary to the client.  Imagine a scenario where an advisor leaves a firm, and the investments of a long-term client depreciate in value.  You might have an unhappy client.  Yet if the firm retains a clear record of the conversations between client and advisor – and the rational for why specific investments were made – they are in a much better place.

Speech recognition isn’t absolutely necessary to do this – but once advisors begin dictating, instead of writing or typing, they inevitably capture more detail because the experience becomes almost frictionless.

Mark Geremia is Vice President and General Manager for Dragon Professional and Consumer, and oversees the product and marketing strategy for Nuance’s Dragon speech-recognition and documentation workflow portfolio. Mark has held various leadership roles within the Dragon business over the last decade, and with his team continues to expand Dragon’s reach across enterprise, legal,  and law enforcement markets, transforming productivity and documentation accuracy for professional, individuals and large organizations. Prior to joining Nuance in 2005, Mark held key marketing management positions at both large and small technology companies. He holds a bachelor of Science Degree in Business Management from Bentley College.