Following Vizolution’s North American Launch, CEO Bill Safran spoke to John Siracusa of Bank On It Podcast at LendIt FinTech USA.
You can read Bill’s interview here or listen at the bottom of the page.
John: So Bill, I know that you are exhibiting at the conference and you are at LendIt. If I am not mistaken, the thing that your company does is help with the customer journey?
Bill: Absolutely. What we see is that so many of the big banks ask their customers to go through these convoluted journeys that are really based around what is good for the bank, rather than what is good for the customer. The types of breaks in the journey include things like requirement for documentation from the customer, (asking) customers to sign things, (getting) customers to view things, (requesting) the acknowledgement of terms and conditions, etc.
What we think is that there is a much better way of solving those problems than sending someone a wad of paper, expecting them to fill it in and then post it back to you. We are looking to have a one and done type situation where the customer can engage with the Bank one time and get to the end of that process.
In addition, what we are looking for is omnichannel. I think a lot of people talk about omnichannel and our definition of omnichannel is that the customer should be able to go either to the branch, to the web, to telephony and still be able to engage with that bank in whatever way that they want to engage with that bank. I think (this) is something that other firms and other banks are really looking at.
John: Looking at it and doing it are two different things, right?
Bill: Completely different things. But I think what is really driving this is not the banks, or the challenger banks, or the neobanks, it’s really the customer’s experience that they have had with the Amazons of the world and the Apples of the world etc.
This has set the benchmark of what customer service looks like, and it’s up to the banks to try and get to that level. It’s tough for them, because while the Amazons of the world have grown up with this technology, the big banks are carrying huge legacy systems. The question is how can they then leapfrog and get up to the position where they can actually provide that type of service.
John: That’s a great point. I know this is going to be a very big question, but how do they?
Bill: Honestly? I think it’s the FinTechs. You have two different types of FinTechs out there in the world: the ones that are trying to eat the big banks’ lunch and those that are trying to help the big banks. We are helping them.
So how did we give technology to those banks so that they can actually improve the service they are giving their customers? Because the big banks generally want to do it. It’s just sometimes they don’t have the internal resources or wherewithal to actually provide their own solutions, so that’s why they are talking to the FinTech guys and that’s why I think at this conference they have, what, 4000 people here.
John: Something like that. I was actually just talking to someone downstairs and he has been here since the beginning and he said it used to be 300 people in a small room in a small place. Now it’s 300 people waiting in a line for coffee!
Bill: I know! But that is how the world is going, and I think it’s really been driven by customer demand. People are seeing gaps in the market that the large banks haven’t been able to fill. Let’s be honest, the banks were a little sleepy and maybe a tad complacent for quite a while. That’s no longer the case.
John: A little is very nice. But that’s so true. I’ve been in the space of banking for many years now and they’ve always been talking about improving the customer experience and omnichannel and all those things that you hear all the time. Nobody really did anything.
Bill: They didn’t have to, that’s why. The other banks were doing it exactly the same as they were and there were no challengers out there, so why change?
John: So look at this way too. Amazon easily could, and I think they even said they will, come into banking. You look at that now and Amazon probably has 50% of all the bank’s customers as their own customer. They could very easily change the face of banking just like that and they know how to provide a great experience.
Bill: They do. The Amazons of the world are what the banks should be worried about.
John posts the Bank On It Podcast weekly. You can listen to more of them here.