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We don’t need your customer service

For a while now Monitise, the mobile payments processing firm, has been researching views on the future of banking with the Future Foundation, part of Experian.

Their objective is to find out how our relationship with money is changing and to understand how the culture of money will develop over the next few years.

The first research report was published last December, and focused upon the mobile internet and what that would mean for financial providers.

The second report came out in May 2009, and concluded that “consumers, led by young people, are migrating away from cash and towards digital transactions. The overwhelming benefit of convenience underpins the appeal of digital transactions and so does a deepening sense of trust in the technology.”

The latest report finds that Britons prefer doing their own banking, and would deliberately choose a computer or a mobile phone to manage their finances before phoning a call centre.  They don't want to deal with people in other words – whether in branches or call centres – but want to self-service wherever and whenever possible.

Key results include:

  • One in five of us would prefer to log-on than dial a call centre and speak to a person
  • This preference has grown rapidly – up from 1 in 20 in 2002 – as technology has improved and broadband become more widespread
  • Unsurprisingly, it is the younger generation leading the way – with more than a quarter of 18 to 25 year-olds opting for technology ahead of the human touch
  • Pensioners are also getting in on the do-it-yourself act, with one in ten logging-on or using their mobile phone to manage their money instead of call centre
  • Fulfilling gender stereotypes, more men than women said that a major benefit of using technology to do their own banking was the lack of other people (22% compared to 13%)

The latest report was produced by the Future Foundation asking 1,000 adults in the UK for their views on the role of technology in customer service. The report is released on Wednesday.

All in all, it made me think it's just another hole in The Wall …


We don't want no human service,
We don't want your bank controls.
No charges or fees on my accounts

Banker, leave my cash alone.
Hey Banker! Leave my cash alone.
All in all, I only want
Another hole in the wall.

And, after a comment on silo-based functions in banks the other day, I thought that Bankers could respond with:

We don't want no integration,
We don't want no consistency.
No surly clients in the branch rooms
Customer, leave those tweets alone.
Hey Customer! Leave those tweets alone.
All in all, please just use
Another hole in the wall.

About Chris M Skinner

Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog, TheFinanser.com, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal’s Financial News. To learn more click here...

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