The emergence of Fintech startups and voice-powered artificial intelligence (AI) have altered people’s expectations for banking. As a result, financial services organizations will leverage advancements in security and predictive technology as a means to improve their efficiency, agility and ultimately deliver a better customer experience, particularly beneficial for smaller and mid-size banks looking to transform how they go to market, according to a new set of predictions from experts at Unisys Corporation.
“We see the customer experience as the key differentiation point for banks’ digital banking strategy,” said Eric Crabtree, global head of Unisys Financial Services. “Today’s customer is relying on his or her mobile device to bank as they go, while major hacks are keeping security concerns top-of-mind. We see a shift in the year ahead where banks move towards a more integrated, omnichannel business model that allows customers to pay bills, apply for mortgages, or purchase goods and services on the go – while utilizing new methods of authentication to ensure people’s data is protected.”
Consequently, Crabtree predicts a rise in biometric authentication and chatbot technology, built on the latest artificial intelligence, to deliver a faster, more secure customer experience.
Prediction: Biometric Authentication Goes Mainstream.
Security remains one of the top concerns facing the financial services industry; the recent Unisys Security Index™ found that more Americans are seriously concerned about identity theft and bankcard fraud than they are about their own personal safety. In this capacity, biometric technology offers immense potential to ensure that even if your card is stolen, authentication technology can detect fraudulent activity in near-real time.
Unisys predicts that in the coming year, biometric authentication will go mainstream – and beyond the more traditionally understood tools like fingerprint or even the iris scan technology available on some smartphones. Specifically, advancements in behavioral biometrics allow banks to analyze smartphone or tablet usage to form uniquely identifiable behavioral profiles across several areas, including how much force users use on the screen, the angles they swipe and even their typing speed. When combined with other authentication methods, like fingerprint or iris scan, this type of behavioral biometric profile can be a major difference-maker in ensuring that the person doing the transaction is authorized to do so.
“We expect continued high-profile cyberattacks will keep security concerns top-of-mind,” said Crabtree. “Those banks that take additional steps to protect their customers’ data, like tapping into behavioral biometrics for their customers, while also embracing new tools like identity-based microsegmentation to encrypt and protect their networks on the back-end, will be well-positioned for success in the year ahead.”
Prediction: Artificial Intelligence Will Have Chatbots Delivering Quality, Real-Time Assistance.
It is no secret that in today’s digital economy, customer data is being generated at a pace not seen before. According to a recent report, it is estimated that 90% of the world’s data has been created in the past two years. Advanced analytics, using machine learning algorithms, are the foundation behind AI, making it possible to understand the nuances of customer behavior by making that transactional data visible and most importantly, actionable.
While AI tools such as predictive banking and chatbots are already being utilized by some banks to provide basic information or handle smaller tasks like account balances, Unisys predicts that the maturation of AI technology – powered by machine learning and advanced analytics, will allow chatbots to deliver a more comprehensive and personalized banking experience. Not only will this allow for a deeper level of service, it eliminates the need to wait on hold or on a line to speak with a customer service representative, delivering results in real-time. Additionally, given the way voice-powered AI has changed the way consumers interact, we expect further integration of voice AI incorporated into digital assistants to facilitate banking requests.
Prediction: Accessibility of New Technology Enables Small and Mid-Sized Banks to Reinvent and Reimagine How They Go to Market.
Historically, big banks have had an edge in what they’ve been able to offer in terms of digital enhancements – largely because they’ve had a bigger budget to develop many of these tools in-house. More recently, the traditional banking market has been disrupted as newer Fintechs have benefited from having the agility and flexibility to create and develop digital customer-centric solutions to accommodate customers frustrated with existing banking services.
Unisys predicts that the advancements in biometric and predictive technology, coupled with the increasing accessibility and improved value proposition offered by partnering with a tech company will enable small and mid-sized banks to transform their offerings and customer service capabilities – helping to bring solutions to market at a quicker pace than a traditional bank can do by itself – allowing small and mid-sized banks to keep pace with bigger banks and Fintechs. Ultimately, technology will fuel the innovation that small and mid-sized banks will use to thrive in the digital age, delivering a seamless banking experience that fuels customer loyalty and as a result, creates new revenue opportunities.
Financial institutions worldwide rely on Unisys solutions. Recently, Unisys launched Elevate™, an end-to-end, digital banking software platform and suite of applications designed to help financial institutions deliver an instantly secure, omnichannel banking experience to their customers.