Digital transformation in the banking ecosystem is forcing financial institutions to completely rethink what customer experience means in a modern, connected world. Consumers are tech-savvy, fickle with their loyalty to a single provider or business, and they expect seamless experiences across digital and physical channels. How are we going to achieve this as an industry?
I had the opportunity to dive into this topic during a thought-provoking Finextra webinar with Morten Olsen, head of branch and ATM development at Nordea in Scandinavia, and Howard Boggs, head of ATM and teller technology at JPMorgan Chase. During the hour-long discussion, we addressed the strategies financial institutions (FI) are deploying to get agile, get lean and enable flexibility during a time of dynamic, disruptive digital transformation.
FIs can remain relevant in consumers’ lives and capture opportunities beyond the traditional, transactional banking ecosystem. Some key observations we discussed during the webinar included:
- Connected commerce as an end-to-end (E2E) experience—thinking beyond touchpoints and focusing on an entire, engaging process to embrace the larger customer journey
- Taking an outside-in perspective
- Improving agility by rolling out fail-fast pilots before scaling up to significant tech solutions
- Expanding omnichannel thinking to include a broader experience
- Focusing equally on bank staff experience as a critical factor in delivering a valuable customer experience
E2E Customer Experience—Bigger than Omnichannel
While omnichannel is a vital transformation that FIs are deploying to create a seamless digital/physical experience, banks need to think beyond the confines of their own products, channels and consumers. The key is “journey thinking” and expanding to the larger retail ecosystem to satisfy consumers’ demand to live in a seamless digital universe.
For example, Nordea is focusing on the home purchase/sale journey because consumers have a propensity to change banks during these transactions. In fact, said Morten, one-third of Nordea’s customer base was in flux specifically during house-related journeys, so the firm built out agile execution teams to improve and expand this journey.
During the webinar, Morten discussed how Nordea is exploring open banking by inviting startups, fintechs and other stakeholders to co-create a platform where customers can find everything they need when buying a new home.
The bottom line: FIs need to move toward a connected commerce mindset where they are leveraging their channels, somebody else’s products and somebody else’s services.
Creating a Seamless, Frictionless Transformation
A JPMorgan survey revealed that 66-70% of its customers use both digital and physical channels, emphasizing the importance of a combined strategy. Its major transformation during the last three years began at the ATM with the idea of expanding the channel into a more complete self-service experience. Howard pointed out that there are a billion consumer “touches” across its fleet annually, in branch or on ATM, so JPMorgan Chase has been focused on building out digital capabilities so customers can seamlessly move between channels.
He also noted that not every innovation works, which is why JPMorgan Chase has launched small pilot projects where it can “fail fast” and gain experience before introducing an entire platform impacting 16,000 ATMs or 5,200 branches.
Empowering Bank Staff
We also discussed staff journeys during the webinar. When employees are equipped and supported with training, infrastructure and tools, they are better prepared to deliver a seamless customer journey. So as FIs embrace innovation and launch projects designed to accommodate consumers’ demands, they also should focus on how to improve staff journeys. Transformation is not complete without addressing in-branch people and processes. By making it easier for staff to service consumers, FIs can enhance the overall journey. Not to mention, staff improvements support increased sales and operational efficiency goals.
Discover How FIs are Mastering the Customer Journey
Access the webinar replay, Master the Customer Journey, to learn why touchpoints matter—but it’s the journey that really counts.
Want even more? Learn how to build meaningful, E2E connections in a broader ecosystem.