The Best–Practice Engagement Bank

The Best-Practice Engagement Bank (continued)…

Best Mobile Banking Experience

Here again we see the descent into mediocrity, because banks are mostly trying to shift their online banking experience onto a smaller screen. The only bank that has come close to capturing the true contextuality of banking in one mobile app today is Hana Bank of South Korea.

We do, however, see some pockets of brilliance emerging. ANZ’s GoMoney is a great example of emerging capability in the payments arena, although as NFC (Near-Field Communications) enabled payments emerge on the scene, we’re really going to see some interesting ‘engagement’ capability on the mobile. OCBC recently launched a“scan and pay” capability built into their App so you can scan in an invoice number from a bill. If billing organizations use stacked-linear barcodes, QR Codes or similar, it is conceivable that an app could scan a bill and enable you to pay it without having to enter any additional information. That would be cooler than just a short cut invoice number capability. Danske Bank has attacked this by using OCR (Optical Character Recognition) to photograph the entire bill and work out whom and what you have to pay.

Hana Bank’s Mobile App – Best Practice Today

We’ve seen Citi, Standard Chartered and some others explore ‘shopping’ Apps – which are sort of loyalty programs built into the shopping experience, trying to capture the Groupon type benefit here. Hana Bank incorporated Coupons into their App with GeoLocation, and their implementation makes a lot more sense than having a separate ‘bank’ shopping app in my opinion. Commonwealth Bank has been experimenting with both GeoLocation and Augmented Reality engagement in some interesting ways too. Commonwealth’s property valuation App is a great example of how taking banking to the customer contextually is the future of the mobile interaction.

Most banks are still stuck trying to figure out how to get as much of their internet banking screens and functionality on to a screen the size of an iPhone. That’s just the wrong approach. We’re making all the same mistakes we made when the Internet came out – we’re limiting development to what the bank wants from the channel (cost migration and competitive competency) rather than real engagement of customers.

ATM Best Practice

Unfortunately legacy thinking and hardware dominates this landscape. Although in recent times we’ve seen banks incorporating check deposit, bill payments and other functionality, we’ve only seen one rethink of the ATM that is truly engagement banking (we’ll get to that in a moment).

Contactless reader built into the ATM (Credit:Michael Degnan)

Bank of America has been recently pushing their ATM check deposit capability in advertising strongly, although this is hardly user experience at it’s best – again the driver is to shift costs out of the branch onto a cheaper channel for the bank, not better UX. HSBC in Hong Kong launched Barcode scanning capable touchscreen ATMs in December so that you can simplify bill payment, although by sticking to traditional advertising methods to promote this new functionality, take up has been slow – you can’t even find a YouTube video on this capability to-date. A number of banks are now incorporating NFC Contactless capability into their ATMs so that you’ll be able to use your NFC phone or contactless card to withdraw cash from an ATM, my SapientNitro pal Michael Degnan recently photographed one of these ATMs in action at a Bank of America location in New York.

BBVA’s ATM Rethink – Best Practice Today

BBVA have undoubtedly the best ATM design today out there, thanks to the design team at IDEO, and the collaboration of the team at NCR and Fujitsu. This is truly a rethink of customer experience on the channel and it works fantastically. It is light-years ahead of most ATM machines out there in the market today. The most impressive thing about this is that someone actually asked the question about what do customers want from an ATM, and how do we humanize the experience. ATMs are cold, impersonal pieces of technology – but BBVA has made the experience of using an ATM desirable, highly usable and massively efficient at the same time.

Where to go from here?

The next big thing in ATM will be the utilization of the phone as the ATM interface, rather than an ATM screen. After all, you can do everything you can do on an ATM on your phone, except get cash out – so if the ATM just dispenses cash than that’s fine. NCR has been working on this technology and Fast Company profiled some of their imaginings in November last year.

Three concepts of the future of the ATM machine from NCR

IVR, Customer Service, Twitter and Contact Centre on Page 3…

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  1. Brett, as usual, you are very thorough. Here is my contrary view. If one was review every bank and credit union that was closed by the regulators the last few years not one was closed to do the lack of what you call “Best Practice Engagement Banking.” Conversely, if you review the top performing banks over the last few years , not one was what you call a “Best Practice Engagement Bank.” This is an indisputable fact as your whole blog post makes this clear…there are none.

    So the question is “Why Bother?”

    The need for what you call a “Best Practice Engagement Bank” has never become a top of mind fully executed plan by any bank or credit union. There is always something else more important like new regulations, stricter capital requirements, etc. In the past, the decision not to excel in the concept of “Best Practice Engagement Banking” had no material impact.

    Everything has changed.

    The spoils go to those who figure “Best Practice Engagement Banking” first.


  2. Ron Shevlin says:

    After David’s comment, I don’t want to appear to be piling on here, but…

    First off, thanks for taking the concept of engagement banking forward a few steps. The term has been used pretty indiscriminately (especially as hashtags in tweets, of which I’m guilty as well). This post puts a lot of good meat around the bones.

    But there are a couple of points that I’d like to quibble with:

    First is the reference to BankSimple. C’mon, Brett. Citing vaporware as a great example of customer service brilliance is simply not acceptable. Anybody can publish their “philosophy” on a blog. The proof is in the pudding. BankSimple simply has not earned the right to be that example. Pun intended.

    Second, while having “fans” or “raving fans” is all well and great, do you really have any proof that being an “engagement bank” produces “fans”? I’ve said this before, will say it again: I strongly believe the reason that some companies have “fans” (vs. just customers) is that those people are FIRST highly engaged in the product or service.

    Example: I like and own a number of Apple products, but I’m not a fanboy. I’m simply not that engaged with gadgets, etc. to be a raving fan.

    Being an “engagement bank” might produce some “fans” among those customers that are already highly engaged with managing their finances. But does being an engagement bank help drive people to become more engaged with managing their finances?

  3. Alex Sion says:

    Had discussion on how to measure “engagement” on behalf of a banking client this AM. Landed on this — not about satisfaction or “fans” — which can frankly be bribed or marketed too easily. To Ron’s point, I may own products/use services but this does not necessarily mean I am a fan or “engaged”. Engagement is really about intimacy — I know you, you know me, we do stuff together, frequently. Digital engagement for an engagement bank should be measured along those lines with the ultimate test being “usage”. Not just customers registered or even customers using the hell out of one function. Customers who are really managing their financial lives with a bank digitally. Customers who take actions when prompted. Customers who have the need/desire to click. And because they are using the hell out of digital channels, they are presumably satisfied with the experience.

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