Watch Replay: Lifting the lockdown on Instant Messaging Post Covid-19



08 Jun, 2020

COVID-19 has changed many aspects of our daily lives, not least transformed how we work. But as businesses adapt to de-escalation efforts, so our their customers and more and more of them are turning to WhatsApp to get the job done.


We recently had the pleasure of hosting a fascinating fire side chat on the place of WhatsApp within the workplace post- Covid-19. Scroll down to read the highlights.


Or watch the debate in full:


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Adrienne Muir (VoxSmart COO), Alan Giles (VoxSmart CCO) and special guest Graeme Walker (Valutrades CEO) gave brilliant insights into the trends in communication now and what we will be seeing in the future as virtual working becomes part of the norm.


Companies are turning to Instant Messaging during COVID-19


The pandemic has tested us in more ways we care to remember, one of them being keeping in touch with our families, colleagues and customers. We have seen incredible spikes in volume, not only in mobile calls but also WhatsApp and WeChat use which highlights some key trends in user behaviour and client relations. 


On average, we have seen a +500% increase in the volume of mobile calls made during the pandemic. There has been similar dramatic increases in WhatsApp and WeChat capture, as well as WhatsApp desktop. VoxSmart are now capturing over 4.5 million messages a month, an unprecedented number.   


The reality is that it’s not just Financial Services affected by this new trend. Many different sectors are seeing increased activity on Instant Messaging channels as the whole world adjusts to working from home. Spanish network carrier Telefonica reported similar spikes in mobile usage in the first months of the coronavirus as well as increases in web traffic.


Convenience will outweigh the controversy in the ‘new normal’


Gone are the days where employee are fired for serving their customers over WhatsApp. Graeme spoke of his choice to adopt a MiFID II compliant WhatsApp capture software over 3 years ago now, “It was 100% client driven and we got the message from our sales team, that they were going to use it whether we endorsed it or not. That's what their clients were demanding, and that's the only way they were gonna get those deals done.”


The data supports Valutrades decision as their impact from moving the company remote during the pandemic hardly impacted their business at all, with only slightly rises in call and message volumes. We compared this to more traditional sell-side institutions where they saw mobile call volumes rise exponentially, some seeing up to 1000% in usage growth.


The commercialisation of WhatsApp for enterprise purposes has been driven through its ease-of-use and zero barrier to adoption. Whereas usually any change to process or technology within any institution is met with some resistance to change, Graeme recalled he was met with zero resistance due to how much his employees used the App outside of work hours. The adoption internally was instant.


IM supports the move away from a 9-5 working day


The idea of being able to take your work on the move and be flexible enough to work anywhere is growing in interest. Adrienne is a long-time advocate for flexibility in the workplace, “We've always focused on making sure we supported our workers are able to work remotely, but like everyone and a lot of our clients, adapting to the changes in how we're communicating is certainly something we've been challenged by


Compliance policy to consider remote working scenarios


While the FCA does not specifically ban WhatsApp or any other messaging platforms, the recently advised against it’s use, basing their judgement on the lack of controls to monitor the channel effectively. However, with technology like VoxSmart Mobile Capture, IM, mobile and SMS channels can be captured in real-time like any other trading communication. With almost all of the commodity trading community using WhatsApp on a daily basis and 4.5 million messages being sent each month, it’s not a question of if banks should be adopting WhatsApp surveillance, it’s a question of when.


Still Interested? Watch the debate in full.



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About our speakers:


AM-Profile@2x  Adrienne Muir | VoxSmart COO


With over 20 years’ market experience working for Exchanges and Financial Markets Technology providers Adrienne has held a number of senior positions globally at LIFFE, New Zealand Exchange (NZX), Trayport Ltd and the London Stock Exchange. She has a real passion for Women in business and leads from the front and if often found mentoring and coaching at work or after hours helping share her experiences with others. Visit Adrienne's LinkedIn profile



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   Alan Giles | VoxSmart CCO


Alan has over 25+ years’ experience in the Enterprise Mobility and Security area. He's held previous senior management roles at iDENProtect, Sony Ericsson, Snow Software and Blackberry. As CCO, Alan leads the International Sales & Marketing Team focused on raising awareness of VoxSmart’s capability and bringing the VoxSmart product suite to market globally. Visit Alan's LinkedIn profile



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   Graeme Watkins | CEO at Valutrades, global brokerage firm. 


A dynamic modern CEO for a cutting-edge business, Graeme is registered with the FCA as CF3, CF10 and CF11 and drives Valutrades with a passion for technology and process efficiency, specialising in solving complex problems with out-of-the-box solutions. Graeme has relevant industry experience of forex and CFD trading stretching almost 15 years, including roles at both oneZero Financial Systems and London Capital Group. Visit Alan's LinkedIn profile




About VoxSmart


VoxSmart is a leader in communications surveillance and mobile capture technology for global financial markets participants. VoxSmart’s suite of communications surveillance products allows firms to communicate, trade and work in a compliant manner to effectively mitigate financial risk and achieve competitive advantage in heavily regulated markets. Visit www.voxsmart.com.


About Valutrades


Valutrades is a FCA regulated ECN broker offering trading on forex, commodities and CFD's via the Metatrader5 and Metatrader 4 platforms and FIX API connectivity. We are true global broker with business on 6 continents and more than 70 countries, and we offer multi-lingual services to create a personalized experience for every trader. For more information go to www.valutrades.com.



Topics: WhatsApp