Kristy Duncan, Women in Payments (Canada)

Women in Payments® initiative is the incredibly positive energy that participants experience. Whether it is speaking, learning, connecting with other women in the payments ecosystem, or exploring ways to build their careers, we provide a platform for women to do this in a supportive and unique way

Kristy Duncan founded Women in Payments® in 2012, after 12 years consulting in the payments market, and a 13-year career at a leading Canadian bank. Her consulting experience spans research, strategy, product positioning, stakeholder facilitation, and other initiatives that promote education and connect people in the payments ecosystem. Kristy’s banking experience includes leadership positions in cash management, treasury, corporate banking, finance and operations. Women in Payments® events are now held in Canada, the US, and Australia.

Kristy is a registered Professional Engineer, and holds a Bachelor of Applied Science and Engineering from the University of Toronto.

 

1.What do you enjoy most about your role at Women in Payments?

What I love about the Women in Payments® initiative is the incredibly positive energy that participants experience. Whether it is speaking, learning, connecting with other women in the payments ecosystem, or exploring ways to build their careers, we provide a platform for women to do this in a supportive and unique way, across multiple payments markets. Our Awards Program affords an opportunity to recognize and celebrate the talents and contributions of women across the industry.

 

2.What are the key challenges for Women in Payments over the next 12 months?

We are very excited to be launching Women in Payments® in Australia in 2016, having already been in Canada for five years, and the US for three. The next steps are to introduce the initiative to other global markets, and broaden the opportunities for women in the payments market to be recognized, learn from leaders and experts, connect with others to explore areas of common interest, and build their careers.

 

3.What are the big opportunities for Women in Payments over the next 12 months?

We just launched a payments education offering in Canada, and will be building on that. We're exploring other opportunities for women to connect and learn, through networking events, shorter seminars, or via online channels. We're also excited to launch our Awards Program in the Australian market- commencing in 2017.

 

4.How big an opportunity is digital disruption for Women in Payments and the Canadian financial services market as a whole?

I believe that digital disruption offers a huge opportunity for women in financial services globally. When you consider that perhaps more than 50% of financial transactions are done by women, it is critical to have women as part of any product or service design and launch team, so they fully understand the user base. For example, I believe women should be an integral part of any digital payment design team, as they have an in-depth understanding of payment transactions from a female perspective, where females comprise about 50% of the target market.

 

5.What innovation are you seeing locally and globally that you think is really effective?

The innovation I’m seeing that’s most effective addresses points of pain in existing processes. For example, in a grocery shopping experience, it might take 10 minutes to select your items, then another 10 minutes to stand in line and pay.The waiting and payment time is really wasted time for both the shopper and the merchant, and if we can shorten that by digitizing the process, we all win.

 

6.What will be a key element to winning in this market over the next 5 years?

I believe we will need both FIs and innovators/disruptors to win in this market. The FIs have very strong assets which many disruptors lack, including strong customer bases, and a very high level of trust and security. But the disruptors can bring innovation and nimbleness to the table, which FIs sometimes struggle with. So in many cases, the key to winning in this market will be to introduce products within a perfect marriage of strong reputation and innovation to create great new customer experiences.

 

7.What aspect of your brand are you most proud of?

I am very excited about the enthusiasm with which this initiative has been embraced by each new market we enter. We are now getting cross-pollination between markets, so we have speakers in Sydney coming from the US, Canadian speakers addressing the US market, and we’ve invited Australian speakers to our US and Canadian events this year. It's great to see the idea sharing, and being able to provide a platform for women to showcase their expertise and leadership on a global basis.

Our Women in Payments Awards Program has been enthusiastically embraced in both Canada and the US, and provides another opportunity for us to recognize and celebrate the strong female talent we have globally in our industry.

 

8.How does your brand go about promoting diversity and how effective do you think it is?

One of our key mandates is to provide a dedicated platform to showcase the exceptional and accomplished women in the payments ecosystem. We feature women speakers who are role models, leaders, and experts in their field, and can share words of wisdom with other women coming up the ranks. Our Awards Program is extremely effective at spotlighting the women leaders in payments who innovate, mentor, and act as domestic and global industry ambassadors.