At Digital Banking 2017, financial industry professionals gathered to exchange experiences and ideas revolving around how to connect with customers in a fast-changing industry.
In recent years, traditional banks have worked to earn back consumer confidence in the wake of the financial crisis, while fintech firms have stepped in to disrupt the environment with advanced digital tools and capabilities. What both sets of stakeholders can agree on now is that consumers are always in search of time-saving tools that need to be intuitive and safe.
With fintech companies setting the bar and often serving as partners, banks are working to deliver digital tools with the speed, simplicity and security consumers have come to expect.
Some compelling features are coming from big banks like Citi, which created CitiFintech to focus on game-changing applications. The global bank is one of the few to bridge banking, money movement and wealth management in one app. Designed for its top-tier clientele, the app engaged 2,500 customers in five months with 32 core features and 60 sub-features. The approval time to open a brokerage account was slashed 75 percent, and applicants now have 55 percent fewer fields to complete when opening an account.
TD Bank takes its tagline – America’s Most Convenient Bank – to heart by implementing speech recognition technology to speed interactions with customer service. Free for all customers, the process takes a voiceprint during a normal customer service conversation, and no further identifying information is requested in subsequent interactions. Other convenient features at the bank include instant reissuance of lost credit cards and Send Money, a way to send and receive money easily at no cost.
Regional banks are innovating, as well. Bank of the West, for instance, found customers were logging in frequently just to check balances, so now clients can choose to see a pre-login balance via the bank’s mobile app. The bank is rolling out Touch ID on the latest iOS devices for improved speed and security with mobile login, and by joining the Allpoint Network, it offers fee-free ATM access to all customers.
As fast, easy and secure digital solutions are the expectation among today’s consumer – particularly among tech-savvy millennials – the question is whether such tools are enough for banks to gain a competitive edge in the marketplace, or if adding value will take on even greater importance.