BIO’s Creative Innovation Director Melanie Pittham has been looking at the state of play of the financial services industry, finding that though the industry was slow to adapt to the way the internet changed customer relationships, it’s now more innovative and customer-centric with a host of changes in progress.
In an article for Finance Digest she first of all talks about what customers are looking for, saying: “When it comes to managing our money in 2017 we want cheaper and more convenient alternatives to the services being offered by conventional banks and the traditional providers of insurance, pensions and mortgages.”
Touching on technology’s power to boost social mobility, she goes on to report on the launch of UK Finance, a new umbrella organisation backed by industry heavyweights and representing 300 global businesses that provide banking, loans, access to stock markets and payment services. In the new, more customer-centric landscape the board will include “a strong, independent consumer champion” although no names have yet been mentioned.
The article goes on to discuss the move towards and popularity of contactless payments as well as customers self-serving, carrying out financial tasks via mobile. But there is a balance to be struck as some customers still prefer physical branches: “For those who still prefer to use cash and cheques, and talk to a human being, the demise of the branch network is anything but customer-centric. Banks must become better at explaining their reasoning for shutting branches and communicate more effectively the benefits of the technology they are investing in.”
But there is still plenty of work to do in financial services to embrace technology and much could be done with better use of data, biometric verifications and services like Messenger to allow customers to lead better, simpler, more secure financial lives. Melanie ends by saying “The members who embrace change will thrive while those that remain stuck in the dark ages will die off.”
Read more on banking’s need to change from BIO CEO Peter Veash.
The BIO Agency has worked with financial services clients including The Co-operative Bank, CMC Markets, Invesco, Lloyds Banking Group and MoneyCorps.