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Can Corporate Banking be as Easy as Ordering Pizza?

digital benchmark webinar

ACI recently hosted Greenwich Associates on a webinar to discuss corporate banking. While not a topic that would usually make attendees salivate, the discussion turned toward ordering pizza (maybe, because it was close to lunchtime) and Greenwich highlighted how corporate banking should be as easy as ordering pizza.

This segment touched upon all 4 market forces that are shaping banking.

Forces shaping open banking

Source: Greenwich Associates

Now let’s open the pizza box…

Greenwich used Domino’s pizza to illustrate this example – a company that has put a strong focus on the customer ordering experience and convenience. More than half of its customers ordered from their mobile device back in 2015, and that same year, Domino’s introduced “The Easy Order” in the United Kingdom, a mix between the Internet of Things and the “Easy” button from Staples. Domino’s has also introduced a “tweet for pizza” campaign – essentially ordering pizza via a tweet.

This is just one innovative company’s way of opening up channels and making it easy for their customers to buy from them. The analogy could easily have been “Dash” buttons from Amazon, ordering an Uber, or streaming content from one of the many on-demand services on the market today.

The pizza analogy within our corporate banking webinar looked at the ease of doing business and the consumerization of corporate banking. Now, compare your most recent corporate banking experience. How hard was it to get in touch with a relationship manager? How difficult was it to make a payment? How many channels were there and how easy was it to engage with the bank?

And now imagine if that bank delivered its next digital feature before you knew you wanted it? (IBM’s recent patent on mood-sensing coffee delivery drones comes to mind). This type of insight brings us to “intellectual capital.” Intellectual capital is threatening to separate the big banks from the regional and smaller banks. However, smaller banks can compete against the Tier 1 institutions by leveraging data analytics to identify the best sources of growth. These data pools can be mined to incorporate unstructured customer feedback, which in turn is fed back into product development and improving the relationship.

Greenwich Associates highlighted one key trend they are seeing in the marketplace: Process digitization. This is not just a slick user interface on the client portal, but rather extends into the back office for easy digital onboarding, and an easy digital credit process. It’s not just the technology stack that is being digitized, but also the mindset and the opening up of banks: One example is exposing data and analytical tools to relationship managers, who can in turn provide actionable insights to clients.

There were polls conducted during the webinar that validated the theories presented. Of the respondents rolling out a new user interface to corporate clients, 43% plan to do so in the next 12 months. Of those that introduced a new user interface, 14% did so within the last six months. The validated theories go beyond the digital banking platform and speak to a move to “open the banks,” with 63% planning to introduce APIs as part of their digital channel solution within the next 12 months.

New, easier to use UIs – and the opening up of banks – will make banking easier, more valuable, and in the long run, more profitable. If we hopped in a time machine and went back to 2015, how many people would have envisioned this rapid and significant market adoption? Is banking going to be as easy as ordering pizza?