Smart Banking

There was a talk show some months after Steve Jobs passed away on hos uniqueness. Larry Ellison, CEO of Oracle, and some other friends shared loving memories of Jobs. Larry Ellison delivered several one-liners that have flooded twitter ever since. One of the most noteworthy is about Steve Jobs’ obsession with his Apple stores. Larry Ellison remembers being dragged repeatedly to a warehouse where Apple had built a mockup of the intended shopping experience. At one of those times he challenged Steve Jobs: “Aren’t you reading the newspapers? Brick and mortar is dead.” Jobs answered, “We’re not using brick and mortar, we’re using glass and steel”. This blog post is a tribute to the heroes that dare to challenge the general opinion and reinvent the customer experience in legacy channels.

There is strong bias by the so called thought leaders in the industry towards digital channels. They try to triumph each other with wild predictions on the tsunami of mobile payments. Similarly, they are convinced that we will see the big switch soon where the on-line channels outsell the branch network. To them, the value proposition in banking is merely a question of availability and simplicity. Advisory services can be packaged and distributed through on-line guides. These thought leaders may be visionary but I would argue that they forget the banking customers in their pursuit of the next new thing.

The chart below is based on a survey that Accenture performed on Nordic banking customers. They were asked what channels they had used during the last month to perform at least one transaction. To me, there are two major takeaways from this graph. Firstly, the banking customers are multichannel already and secondly we are doing ourselves and our customers a disservice if we disregard the legacy channels. The most used and probably most neglected channel is the ATM. Similarly, the branch is the third most frequently used channel. So, if you want to optimize the customer experience for your customers you have to consider the legacy channels.

We at Avanade are fortunate to work with several banks that are looking for ways to differentiate themselves by applying the latest IT technology to innovate the customer experience in legacy channels. Many of these banks are Spanish, proving the truth in the old saying that necessity is the mother of innovation. We own the solutions and have therefore decided that we will stage a road show with these harvested solutions. We have several demos showing how to improve the customer journey as presented in the swim lanes below.

The roadshow, called Smart Banking, will visit Stockholm in February so please reach out if you and your colleagues want to participate in a half day session on how to innovate the customer experience of the most frequently used and probably most neglected customer channels. Click on this link to register your interest and we will get back to you to find a date that suite you.

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