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Clients embrace digital banking but still want human interaction

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Even though customers have increasingly switched to digital banking services, the demand for human interaction is still there.

This is according to a global survey conducted by Temenos, a banking software company. The survey is based on the views of over 4 700 retail banking customers worldwide.

The survey’s findings indicate that while customers want and expect more from their digital banking, they also view access to people, when needed, as a priority.

It highlights that making it easier to speak to a human representative was the top item customers want banks to focus on, cited by 19% of the respondents. It was closely followed by making it easier for customers to complete banking tasks themselves (17%).

“The findings suggest that digital delivery, complemented by human interaction at the point of need, is the preferred model of choice.”

In terms of the most preferred mode of digital banking, 65% of respondents said they prefer to bank via their apps.

Internet banking or banking via the bank’s website followed, with 51% of the respondents noting it as the second most preferred mode of banking.

Forty-two percent of customers like interacting with their bank on the phone, 37% by e-mail, and one-in-five (19%) noted social media.

According to the survey, three-in-five customers said their last visit to a branch was because they needed to, rather than because they wanted to, reflecting the trend for branch closures.

Joaquin De Valenzuela Muley, senior vice-president and business line director for Temenos, says: “Banking products are out. Advice and support that allow customers to meet their goals are in.

“Banks' primary focus must be on their customers and finding ways to anticipate and meet their individual needs and goals, such as buying a car or saving for their children's education. This involves a different approach, reinventing processes and unifying the bank around the customer.”

The survey also shows that four-in-10 (43%) bank customers want easier ways of paying bills or sending money on time.

Meanwhile, over half of respondents want services that will positively impact their lives in the long term.

These, reveals the survey, are intelligent solutions to help them reach their life goals (29%) and accurate recommendations for budgeting and saving (22%).

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