Generational differences: The age of digital banking
Generational differences: The age of digital banking
As the times move forward, the digital influence of banking is undeniable, with companies such as Monzo and Starling revolutionising the financial market with banking run through a simple app.
Offering everything your regular bank does – and then some – it seems there is an inevitable shift away from traditional banking methods into a new age. Millennials and Generation Z make up the majority of financial consumers and according to Monzo’s 2019 Annual Report, they have recently passed 2 million users and add 200,000 every day.
But what about those in the older generation who still like to do everything the old-fashioned way and do everything in branch?
It was recently found in a survey conducted by The Deloitte Centre for Financial Services that bank branches offer the highest rates of customer satisfaction and remain the dominant channel when it comes to opening both simple and complex accounts. However, it seems that keeping traditional banking alive could be difficult as banks are forced to update and adapt their services to the times.
What are the benefits of digital banking?
In essence, digital banking is the epitome of convenience.
No matter what age you are, you want things to be put plainly and to be done as quickly as possible. Digital banking offers you simplicity when it comes to services and everything is available at the click of a button, allowing you to manage your money flawlessly without even having to speak to anyone.
Digital banks often offer you more features than a traditional bank, such as the option to put your spare change into a savings pot or pay someone for your half of a restaurant bill by easily transferring it into their account.
You also sometimes have a better chance at good interest rates and lower fees when taking out an account with a digital bank, increasing the chances of you having a good experience.
Sure, it may not offer face to face interaction, but many digital banks still have call centres that people can call or email into should a problem ever arise.
Doing your banking online also has some risks. If their servers go down at any point, you will have no access to your accounts until it’s fixed.
This also runs the risk of digital banking failing one of its biggest assets; security. Your information may be hacked, the possibility of which increased if your information is spread across multiple devices.
If you’re a beginner, digital banking might not be as simple as it seems to others. There are tutorials online, but even these can be complicated.
For those of us who are technophobes or don’t have any internet, digital banking isn’t really of any use. You can’t use something that isn’t there, and if you feel like you won’t understand it then what’s the point.
Thus, lie the dilemma between generations and their banking methods.
So, what can be done?
According to Deloitte’s research, the best way to move forward is for banks to strike a ‘balance between physical and digital footprints’ by merging the human qualities of traditional banking and the ease of digital banking together to make the ultimate banking experience.
They make the suggestion that branches should introduce “digital capabilities that would enhance convenience” such as self-service screens for people to use (with the option of help from a staff member if needed) or giving people the option to book a video meeting when appointments are full.
For example, Natwest previously introduced an artificial intelligence bot named Cora into one of their branches to answer any basic questions customers may have. This is also available on their internet and mobile services.
These kinds of options aren’t brand new ideas, but they are often only available in selected branches, meaning not everyone has the option.
This can also work the opposite way, by giving customers a branch experience online it can show high levels of customer service. It also allows people to move effortlessly between digital and physical because there will essentially be no difference.
In the end, it appears that compromise is key. One is not better than the other, and it seems they need to work together in order to thrive. Adaptation is important in business, but customers should remain at the heart of their efforts.
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