High street banks will spend $20 billion by 2019 to improve the in-branch banking experience, following the customer experience path largely being defined by Digital Transformation projects.
Research from analyst IDC says that as digital automation has taken the burden of transactional banking away from the high street, branches must become sales centres to survive. To begin with, branches must acknowledge the customers’ digital lifestyle. The smarter banks will take advantage of the digital revolution by deploying tools such as virtual reality and concierge check-in via customer mobile devices, alongside analytics of customer behaviour, to ensure that in-branch visits are profitable.
“The end result of transforming the branch will be when the right mix of technology and personnel allows the bank to immediately engage with the customer, as opposed to the customer engaging with the bank, and both the customer and the institution can mutually reap the benefits,” says Marc DeCastro, research director for IDC.
The banking customer experience was once dominated by the high street branch. Yet the $20 billion being spent to overhaul branches is being eclipsed by investment in IT services in the sector, which will surpass $100 billion over the same period.
As we have blogged previously, Digital Transformation is about harnessing the power of technology to meet corporate objectives. This example neatly illustrates how technology is taking a leading role where previously it would have been a secondary element driving a strategy forward. Digital Transformation is no longer about making technology work for the business, it is about acknowledging that technology increasingly defines a business and decides whether it wins or loses in its chosen competitive field.