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Building human relationships through digital channels

a conference all day, I was asked to give a summary at the end of the day, and
was intrigued to find that all of my notes talked about human relationships
through digital channels.

Here’s a short summary to share with y’all.

In the opening presentation, we heard that banks need to continue
to advise customers about finance by providing strong customer engagement
through remote channels.  This specifically referred to KYCC – Know Your
Customer’s Context – and the leverage of location-based services combined with
data leverage of the customer’s needs, wishes and challenges.

Then we heard about a bank that offers signin using facebook,
twitter or linkedin, where an account opening takes place in under a day using
the KYC from the customer’s existing bank.  In this content an interesting
nuance was the rethinking of their internet bank offer to move from
click-to-see to scroll-to-see.  This is a key point in the tablet age:
touch screen users do not click … they scroll or slide if you prefer (nice!).

This was a key learning from our third presentation, where the use
of mobile tablets has made it far more focused to place a contact telephone
number on their online services.  After all, if you want to encourage
customer interaction, what better way than making sure they can one-touch to
call you from their mobile screen?

These presentations for me provided the backdrop theme for the
day, and the theme is designing from a human perspective for the way we interact.

In fact, a good way to contextualise this is to view how mobile adoption
has taken place in four waves:

first wave is when people used mobiles to find information;

second wave used mobiles to transact;

third wave allowed interaction with the financial provider through remote services;

fourth wave, where we are today, allows anyone with a mobile smartphone to
manage everything on the move, 24*7*365.

This is why we do not have channels today.  There’s no such
thing as multichannel, let alone omnichannel – whoever came up with that
sh’ite? – we just have my reality augmented by digital services.

This is why it has to go further than allowing customers to design
their financial management as they see fit, to banks applying different views
for account management by account segment. 

Each account segment of your customer base should be able to design
their own way of viewing their money from young to old, male to female,
caucasian to indian, catholic to jew, and so on and so forth. 

Everyone should be able to have a view of their account management
by age, sex, ethnicity and religion and more, as they see fit. 

This goes beyond internet skins – where we just change the front end
view of an account – to being the core of how we structure and present account information.

But that’s a long way off as most banks today have transactional
style systems presenting transactional style statements.

Many banks have yet to move beyond a credit and debit view of a
personal financial management view to a mobile financial management view.

Only a very small number of leading edge banks are offering the
true view: a view that suits the way in which each and every customer uniquely wants
to see their money.

We are getting there, slowly, but we are getting there.

And the core of everything comes down to human design, which is
why we have human interaction at the heart of everything.  Human
interaction is the reason why 90% of account openings come through branches
whilst 90% of account services are self-served.

And if we can design more of the humanity into those remote transaction
services, then eventually we may just be able to design customer experiences
where 90% of account openings also come through remote services.

That is why people want human interfaces for human services, such
as the depositing of money the first time with a bank, as demonstrated by this clip
from South Park:


It’s gone and now, I’m gone too 🙂



About Chris M Skinner

Chris M Skinner
Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog, the Finanser.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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  • Hi Chris, thanks for this summary and congratulations for the way you “conducted” this summary.