AI Makes Banks Cost-Effective and Efficient: Mohua Sengupta, Mashreq Bank

On the first day of Analytics India Magazine’s The Rising 2021, Mohua Sengupta, Managing Director Bangalore at Mashreq Bank, delivered a keynote on how artificial intelligence is revolutionising banking.

A State University of New York at Buffalo graduate, Mohua comes with more than 22-years of experience and has been previously associated with Royal Bank of Canada, Accenture, Mphasis, iGATE, and ITC Infotech. In her new role, Mohua is responsible for Mashreq Bank’s Shared Services vertical in Bengaluru, Pakistan and Egypt.


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AI: Talk of the town

AI is not a new concept. However, since the last decade, it has become a buzzword in every industry. Mohua said two main factors contribute to this: 

  • Every industry is sitting on a humongous amount of data, which is useless if not utilised to its full potential. AI helps industries and organisations make sense and use of this data. 
  • Computing capacity has increased manifold. A tremendously high capacity of the computing system enables industries and organisations to make sense of data. 

Banks sit on large amounts of data. 

What AI solves for banks 

Banks started its digital transformation journey a decade back. But the pandemic accelerated the transition. “This  is why many companies are saying that the pandemic has been their Chief Digital Manager,” Mohua said. 

With pandemic-driven digital transformation, banks are finding it difficult to differentiate themselves from their competitors, more than ever now. This is where AI steps in. Banks’ USP lies in the technology that they use. 

How do banks use AI? 

  • Customer Experience: Banks leverage technology to provide better experiences to their customers with the use of AI-based chatbots.

“If banks had to provide human-led services for every single query, it would become a tremendously expensive proposition. 80 percent of consumer questions and doubts can be managed by an AI,” Mohua added. 

  • Efficiency: Humans like to work in intellectually-stimulating roles,and do not prefer doing repetitive tasks. And when people perform repetitive jobs, they tend to make more mistakes. Banks can deploy AI to perform those repetitive tasks. 
  • Cost Rationalisation: Thus, AI replaces humans, enabling banks to lower their costs, and allowing its employees to do more value-added work. 

Use cases of AI 

Banks use AI for the following use-cases: 

  • Customer Service
  • Prediction of future outcome
  • To identify fraudulent behaviour: AI is heavily and regularly used in the middle office of banks for anti-money laundering and fraud management. “Everything being digitised, security is a big focus for us. And AI can be extremely helpful in that,” Mohua said. 
  • Cognitive process automation: Banking involves repetitive processes such as loan processing. “Previously, in the absence of AI, loan processing would take months. With AI, a humongous quantity of loan requests can be managed in a couple of days,” Mohua explained. “There are exceptional cases in which loan applications are directed towards humans. Thus, ensuring better use of intellectual resources,” she added. 
  • Hiring professionals: Human biases interfere in the hiring process. AI hiring engines help find the best candidates for a particular job, eliminating all biases. 
  • Robotic Process Automation: Most bank call centres today use robotic process automation.

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Debolina Biswas
After diving deep into the Indian startup ecosystem, Debolina is now a Technology Journalist. When not writing, she is found reading or playing with paint brushes and palette knives. She can be reached at

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