Banks to re-think customer data usage

Customer expectations of their data usage may not match that of banks according to a panel at FinTech Connect in London this week. “I think there’s a very fine line between using the data in a way that increases trust and makes the customer feel safe and guided, and then on the other side trying to …

by | December 4, 2019 | bobsguide

Customer expectations of their data usage may not match that of banks according to a panel at FinTech Connect in London this week.

“I think there’s a very fine line between using the data in a way that increases trust and makes the customer feel safe and guided, and then on the other side trying to sell stuff to them,” said Swedbank’s chief product officer, corporate and cash management, Carolin Runnquist.

The bank recently conducted research into consumer trends.

“The very interesting finding – the key finding – was that [customers] don’t want us to be too proactive because they feel very strongly about their integrity,” she said. “And a hypothesis could be that young people or Generation Z want the proactivity, they don’t want to think at all. But that was not the case.”

Jamie Broadbent, head of digital and innovation at RBS International, said that banks and technology companies cannot be held to the same expectations.

“From a consumer perspective there’s completely different expectations around what a bank does for me and the standard that I hold them to in my mind, versus other market participants right now. I see it in our own customer data – our customers are embracing other services, but for very different things,” said Broadbent.

A 2018 survey by business intelligence group RFI found that Britons aged between 18 and 24 trusted Amazon and PayPal to protect their personal data above banks.

The moderator of the panel, Andrew Vorster of consultancy firm Innovation Catalyst, said that banks should offer the same level of personalisation provided by Google, Amazon, Facebook, and Apple (GAFA).

“I want my bank to say that we’ve picked up from your cookies that that’s the 17th time today you’ve been looking at scuba diving trips to the Maldives – do you want a loan? Why can’t my bank do that for me? Amazon sure will when they start offering financial services.”

Aidan Millar, chief data officer at DNB Bank, agreed with Vorster that banks are not doing enough with the data they have at their disposal. He positioned banks in future competition with bigtech, though said that banks have established trust on their side.

“What Amazon is doing is building the most detailed digital profile of their customers, and you don’t even know that it’s happening … Only the bank knows more about you than that because the bank’s got 20 years of every single thing you’ve spent money on.

“I would trust my bank more with my digital profile than I would Amazon or Facebook … My desire though is that they would do more with it.”

According to Broadbent, the future financial landscape will see the same participants of banks, fintechs, and bigtechs, but that some will become redundant – including banks.

“The fundamental roles that they all play will still be there, because they’ll have worked out what their place is in that ecosystem. We’ll have a laser-like focus on the things that we all do well, we’ll stop doing things that we don’t do well, and ultimately it will be the customer that decides.”

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