Efficacy of Digital Banking

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With the reforms and liberalization of the economies of various countries in the last couple of decades, the world has witnessed a tremendous upgradation in technological advancements and digitization. While computerization has helped in systematic record creation and its reproduction in a desired form; automation techniques and software has made this recorded content user friendly. Emerging technologies like big data, cloud computing and artificial intelligence have taken technological development to the next level by facilitating a paradigm shift from Physical to Digital.

In response to this fast pace development, Banks today are focusing on leveraging technology to dramatically change the existing forms of customer services and to provide an unprecedented delightful experience to its users. The acquisition of technological capabilities by Banks is an important driver, perhaps the most important enabler of Digital Banking as an emerging banking proposition for all types of customers. The early adopters in Digital Banking space have already introduced unique banking offerings to reach out to their customers – both for superior product delivery and internationally benchmarked service by using cutting-edge Innovative Technologies. Services such as Online Banking, Mobile Banking along with online shopping & payment services have helped customer avail 24x7x365 banking along with financial control on-the-go.

India, in particular, is well poised to ride this digital wave. Recent government initiatives of Digital India, Make in India, Skill India and Start up India will lay the foundation of digital led reforms in India. Digital Banking, driven by disruptive technologies of mobility, digitization and cloud, shall play a pivotal role in supporting these initiatives, making them an inclusive and sustainable growth model.

Digital Banking journey has three key components – Digitization, Digital Channels and Data Management framework

Digitization

It is the process of automating all the workflows and storing all customer related content in digital form. Digitization enhances Bank’s operational efficiencies and reduces service TAT (Turnaround Time) – allowing customers to experience service excellence comparable to competing sectors of e-commerce, hospitality and lifestyle.

Digitization enables Bank to be more agile as customer information can be accessed at finger tips across all customer touch points (branches/ contact centre/ back office operations etc) resulting in customer delight. For instance, YES BANK has partnered with NEWGEN to automate all the internal business workflows including Corporate Trade and Retail liabilities acquisition related processes.

Digital Channels

Today customers can interact with their Banks through more channels than ever, and the preferred channel not only contributes to customer satisfaction but can also have a significant impact on banks’ revenue. While customer preference for accessing digital channels including ATMs, IVR, online and mobile banking is on a rise, a larger segment of “under banked” population still relies on traditional point of sales like the bank branches. The key for banks is to determine the optimal digital channel mix for each customer that will maximize revenue (or reduce costs) without significantly reducing customer satisfaction or engagement. Digital channels are often backed by a robust middleware to optimize technology architecture and facilitate data access across all channels.

As per the trend, banks have been conservative in adopting technology in the start. Particularly, mobile banking which started almost a decade after the customers had already become dependent on mobile phones. India has more than 170 million social media users however only a miniscule proportion of users enjoy banking services and transactions on this potent media. To overcome this lag, banks have started to invest in SMAC (Social Mobile Analytics & Cloud) technologies so that the solutions created are relevant and compatible with the contemporary technology tools.

Way back in 2008, YES BANK offered India’s first mobile money solution probably much ahead of its time in India. Technology and business landscape has changed significantly since then. Digital space today commands ‘Here and Now’ consumable services real time.

YES BANK benefits from the learnings of our experience to get it right from customers’ perspective.
An effective digital banking road map would need to meet requirements of growing proportion of digital native customers by offering banking services on social media and smart phone users. Digital wallets, virtual cards, e-commerce alliances are some of the key initiatives to take care of short term remittance and spending money needs. In long term, these should eventually translate this into a full-fledged Digital Financial Market place.

Data Is Key For Digital Bank

The advent of BIG DATA technologies has put Banks in a never before state in terms of consumer data usage. The process and authentication oriented banking industry are biggest congregators of consumer data and with the BIG DATA in picture it has become possible to churn out insights from the collected data. But to optimize the usage of this data, a clear structuring of the same is a must. Lot of work needs to be done on optimizing the ways and means to collect the data, understand the data and make sense of the same to understand the customer better and enhance the customer engagement. The data if used appropriately can also reduce risk by enhancing security measures.

Digital progress will depend a lot on how one blends DIGICAL and MANUATE as concept. DIGICAL being the Digital and Physical intersection and MANUATE being the Manual to Automate journey. Globally, there is a need to do assisted hand holding to the customer and bring them on Digital platform simultaneously, the legacy processes of manual have to be automated, in the right blend and calibrated speed.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ritesh Pai is the Senior President and Country Head, Digital Banking at YES BANK. Currently, he is leading all the Digital Banking Initiatives at YES BANK with a vision to create Enterprise-wide Digital Banking Strategy cutting across all business verticals and building pan bank synergies to create the “Bank of the future”. Ritesh has transformed a set of subscale and substandard channels into one of the banking industry’s largest digital real estate serving millions of customers. Having designed and delivered radically simplified digital platform, he remains passionate about creating and deepening customer value propositions that use business, technology and design. He is a commerce graduate with masters in financial management , having close to two decades of banking experience in Project Management, System design and implementation for cards  (prepaid, debit and credit), consumer lending and direct banking channels – Internet, Mobile, IVR, ATM’s , call center, home banking  and payment solutions.

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