Enabling digital banking success is a team game

March 01, 2022

The lightning-paced process of building and delivering great digital banking solutions is not for the faint-hearted. Seizing the correct opportunities while sidestepping pitfalls requires providers and financial institutions to identify and collaborate in partnerships that consistently create a successful digital platform.

These foundational partnerships should provide value for both technology providers and financial institutions within every step focused on executing strategies to achieve digital wins. Key elements of a successful partner strategy are listening, research, and continuous evolution – resulting in robust digital product delivery.

Steps for a successful digital banking partnership

Effective listening must help establish the foundation for effective digital partnerships between technology providers and the financial institutions they serve. Financial institutions and their customers willingly share feedback, but are software developers listening intently for opportunities to capitalize on what they learn? Digital banking providers that listen well respond by acting upon their findings. Their best response isn’t in words but in acting on what they hear.

Frequent listening and communication

Besides robust technology development, sustainable partnerships thrive on open, two-way feedback to make the bank/provider relationship valuable.

Your technology partner should hold regular advisory forums that encourage open dialog around strategic industry issues to ensure continued relevance and ongoing competitiveness for bank technology solutions. These forums range from formal user groups and long-range product planning meetings to fewer formal interactions that fuel the free exchange of information.

User group meetings should be tactical, with a near-term focus on product capabilities, design choices, and prioritization of new features. Participating banks should represent the voice of the client base, offering direction and assistance in ensuring a digital provider’s offerings address market needs in uncertain economic times.

Clear product bulletins and updates should flow regularly to bank partners, keeping bankers up to date on the status of new developments.

In addition, the digital provider has a responsibility to follow and interpret trends in technology, innovation, and market needs. Bankers should provide clear direction on their banking and customer strategy, directing where technology is needed to support it, ensuring alignment in the areas of solution capabilities, infrastructure, and professional services.

Adjust, refine and evolve digital banking strategies

The key to creating value from digital strategies derives from effective listening and relentless innovation focused on providing customer experiences that adapt to frequent market shifts and changes.

According to a Deloitte report from 2020, they found the front-line staff at several large retail banks eager to engage with the bank’s customers in ongoing conversations. These same listening elements help keep the digital strategies of technology partners and banks fresh and forward-looking.

Know me: Provide tools that demonstrate you understand the customer’s financial journey.

Inform me: Make it easy to see the complete set of rich data, content, and tools needed to guide customer conversations.

Enable me: Provide logical design and intuitive access to the bank’s full capabilities.

Guide me: Give clear support, nudges, and advice to have insightful, natural conversations with clients.

Connect me: Enable bankers to work as one team to serve customers consistently.

Deliver digital experiences that exceed the bank and customer expectations

An executive at a bank partner succinctly summed up their expectations for digital solutions from their technology partner as: “Help us to enable the human relationship digitally.” Toward that end, digital products and services bankers seek today should:

Provide the user experience and capability customers need, regardless of how they want to access digital banking – either through a mobile application or responsive online channels. Product features should remain consistent and uniform irrespective of the medium used.

Offer modular solutions in retail banking that match the way the bank thinks about customer segments - serving consumers, small businesses, and high net-worth customers on a single platform.

Leverage open banking and APIs to easily create unique product features and future flexibility.

Integrate financial wellness capabilities to deepen customers’ relationships by providing features such as:

  • Account aggregation, budgeting, and categorization
  • Digital receipts for insights and savings on purchasing data
  • Financial calculators
  • Banker chat
  • Credit insights
  • Spending insights
  • Automated savings

Introducing Digital One Flex

An example of a robust digital offering based upon a strategy of carefully listening to the bank clients while factoring in the customer needs is Digital One Flex. This new solution from FIS provides the flexibility, integration, and sustainable future that clients have come to expect from a technology partner in it for the long haul. The advantages of Digital One Flex include:

  • Greater operational efficiency for bank staff with a single platform to serve multiple customer types
  • Increased product offerings with a modular design
  • Fee income opportunities with easily created and integrated additional capabilities
  • Greater insights gained on customers via financial wellness and data aggregation

Robust solutions such as Digital One Flex evolve from digital strategies that involve carefully listening to financial institutions, researching consumer needs, and dynamically adjusting to reflect market conditions. Today’s bankers should expect nothing less from their digital partnerships.

About the Author
Nick Woodcock, SVP and Group Executive Digital Banking, FIS
Nick WoodcockSVP and Group Executive Digital Banking, FIS

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