The future of banks: customer service bots or multipurpose terminals?
The rapidly changing finance market, affected by the emergence of FinTech startups, forces banks and financial institutions to optimize their operations and look for ways to retain their customers since customized services are no longer enough.
Financial institutions face the challenges of intensifying investments in various smart solutions. For example, to increase the customer service quality and their own image, Scandinavian banks plan to test bots (artificial intelligence) that can replace a huge amount of employees.
Daniel Fukson, business development manager at Lithuanian banking technology company BS/2, says that financial institutions should pay more attention to multipurpose solutions that may become an alternative for the entire bank branch.
“Automated or smart customer service solutions are making their first steps now, and their effectiveness hasn’t been evaluated yet. However, there is another area to move for innovative banks – the multifunctional terminals – that can replace a small bank branch and provide customers with all needed services in one place. It meets the case, while more financial institutions go online and cut their traditional branches and staff,” said Fukson.
According to the head of the BS/2 business development department, the company has been successfully developing such a technological solution VTM.iQ for some time already. Banks that are using this equipment significantly cut their expenses, find no need to rent premises and hire new staff.
“One advantage of VTM.iQ is that it is multipurpose and can be used not only for the banking products but also for insurance, retail, and information services. This terminal can be placed in shopping malls, post offices, railway stations, or other places with large people flows. In essence, it is a self-service terminal where customers can buy various services and get a bank specialist’s assistance via video-conference call,” explained Daniel Fukson.
The BS/2 representative noted that this equipment promotes customer loyalty due to its functionality and usability. Customers are provided with an opportunity to open an account and perform all most common financial operations around the corner, even in a small town where there are no bank branches at all.
“The number of online banking products is growing. It means that customers have less opportunity to communicate directly with bank staff and even might feel wasted. VTM.iQ solution helps keep this direct contact because customers can get professional advice and see a person (actually, a bank’s face) who really cares. It means that banks can stay in the client area following the course of operational excellence and not become a faceless financial monster,” added Fukson.
VTM.iQ can provide a range of different opportunities: from making a loan and bank service agreement to card obtaining, bill, accepting payment, and purchasing and immediate printing of flight or concert tickets. To get access to services, a client should authorize himself with a bank card, biometrics data, NFC, and other ways.
This type’s first multipurpose units have been successfully delivered to Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, and other countries.