Omnichannel Solutions for BFSI sector

BFSI players that use more channels are known to have a wider reach and therefore, have sold more products sold per customer compared to those with lesser channel reach

BFSI players that use more channels are known to have a wider reach and therefore, have sold more products sold per customer compared to those with lesser channel reach

The new age banking customers – changing paradigms

BFSI is one of the major sectors where digital has had a significant influence. The advent of social media and increasing internet penetration has primarily created a digital push for BFSI players, as more and more consumers today prefer interacting with their brands and service providers in a non-linear manner. Both businesses and consumers have now moved to digital platforms in the past decade – as on today, India has over one billion mobile phone connections and smartphone user base is expected to grow to 520 million users by 2020, according to a report by BCG and Google.

India has already seen the emergence of digital and social media banking offerings like 811 (from Kotak Mahindra); Digi Bank (from DBS) that deployed chatbots which enables customers to interact with the bank on Twitter, Whatsapp and Facebook; iMobile SmartKeys (by ICICI Bank) that enables customers to pay bills, transfer funds via chat, messenger, email or games without having to exit their current apps.

Need for Omnichannel – the India story

Among other digital trends, Omnichannel is aimed at creating consistent experience whether accessing the brand/ company on a mobile, tablet or while visiting a branch/store in person. Especially in the case of banking, financial and insurance services, a streamlined Omnichannel approach will help achieve a smooth customer experience ensuring the transaction is completed without a glitch.

According to market estimates, almost half of banking consumers today use only digital channels for their transactions and therefore expectations are outpacing experiences at most organizations. Statistics also show that there are currently 45 million active urban online banking users in India and the number is expected to more than double by 2020.Furthermore, Digital India, the initiative by the Govt. of India is seeking to transform the country into a digitally empowered society, while supporting rapid digitization of India’s financial services.

What is Omnichannel Banking?

Multi-channel banking, which is a precursor to the present day Omnichannel banking solutions, was basically an online platform that encouraged customers to use call centers for their everyday banking needs. As the number of touch points increased, the backend IT systems became more complicated and there arose a need for an integrated platform to offer a seamless customer experience. Omnichannel Customer Experience basically combines all customer interactions across channels and gives a single view to the agent/ CX expert dealing with the customer directly. The platform integrates views from channels including email, chat, voice, social media, video, web forms, self service, SMS and so on. The boom in smartphone apps coupled with an Omnichannel view enables banks to offer various app-based services such as budgeting or financial planning via the mobile: a relatively untapped service to date.

Figure 1: Omnichannel customer journey map

How banks can benefit from Omnichannel banking

  1. Capture the value of increased product penetration and usage– BFSI players that use more channels are known to have a wider reach and therefore, have sold more products sold per customer compared to those with lesser channel reach. Additionally, banks could also gain from the newly emerging digital offerings such as mobile banking, online account opening, online loan applications, remote deposit, digital payment options, easy account management, and so much more. Before CBSL transformed the end to end customer lifecycle process of a leading Indian financial services company in April’16, the company was doing ₹33 Lac of disbursement in the first month and within 2 years, with the same headcount, just by using additional digital mediums like Tablets/Biometric Device/Work Flow tool with Mobile App/Automated CAM, disbursements crossed ₹33 Crore in value.
  2. Pursue digital sales – take advantage of newer sales channels such as mobile apps, social media selling, email campaigns, upsell /cross sell through web chat and of SEO & SEM. For instance, CBSL’s Omnichannel solution for a leading Indian insurance player provides a customer lead management module right from capturing real time customer traffic from various online channels (Website, Google, other Social Media Platforms) to outcalling and pitching/ selling the Motor Insurance in less than 5 minutes of customer showing the interest. This has helped improve the conversion rates by 55-60%.
  3. Gain from the insights derived from Omnichannel customer analytics–Metrics that provide visibility into customer touch points and interactions such as account opening, account servicing, and product sales and service form the core of an Omnichannel governance framework. These metrics not only provide intelligence and measurement for individual touch points, but also help enhance operational performance at the channel level. These critical CX metrics also help banking and financial institutions measure the impact on long-term aspects such as the customer lifetime value and overall customer relationship.
  4. Aim for a unified experience across all channels – apart from banking transactions, banks and financial institutions could utilize the newer channels to send out critical customer communication. Among many, one of CBSL’s solution for an Indian nationalized bank includes an Omni Channel platform that is integrated with the bank’s Core Banking Systems (i.e. CRM, Social Media ORM & IVRS) to create a single interface of integrated engagement across all customer touch points including Chat, Email and Chat BOTS for an enhanced customer experience.

The way forward for Omnichannel Banking

A recent CGN Research & Advisory Group’s study shows that the demand for Omnichannel within the expanse of digital CX services is set to grow substantially to an unpreceded 68% of the overall banking customer base by 2020. According to a Nielsen survey on Global Mobile Shopping, Banking and Payment report, more than half (53%) global respondents indicated security concerns as top mobile-banking barriers. Following this, the same survey also revealed that customers are looking forward to newer features such as Facial recognition software (41%) and check scanning/deposit technology (39%) in their future banking apps – most likely as a remedy to the growing security concerns.

As part of the migration toward Omnichannel banking, banks will be more forthcoming in realigning their core CX strategies, for instance, changing branch timings and hiring/training on digital skills for employees. As customer touch points increase, data security vulnerabilities will also be impacted, for which banks will look to adopt biometrics solutions such as a fingerprint or voice recognition/analytics to address security concerns.

In summary, customer centricity, data security and digital-led newer banking features will lead all Omnichannel and digital banking trends in future. Going digital and mobile for banking financial institutions in future will no longer be an option, but an inevitable strategic move to flourish.

Authored by Neeraj Tandon, CEO, Conneqt Business Solutions (A Quess Company)

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