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How Will Bank Technology Investment Inform 2015 Strategies?

  • by Computer Services, Inc.
  • Mar 16, 2015

What plans have you made for improving customer service and strengthening relationships with account holders this year? Your banking peers recently told us that—for 2015—implementing new technology will serve as a crucial tactic toward achieving those, and other, key goals.

CSI’s Executive Report: 2015 Banking Priorities features the results of our annual survey of more than 200 banking executive like you, in which nearly 23 percent of respondents cited investing in new technologies as their second highest opportunity for 2015—just behind driving interest income and loan growth.

It’s clear that bankers remain committed to investing in technology products and services this year, with a vast majority of respondents, 65.1 percent, planning to increase their investment in technology, versus only 0.5 percent planning to decrease their investment.

Institutions’ plans for technology improvement and investment came up in several areas of the report. In fact, the survey responses regarding banks’ strategic focus for 2015 reveal that most strategies indeed revolve around new or improved bank technologies.

To that point—and with the explosion of mobile and digital channels as well as increased service expectations—bankers are putting renewed focus on how they deliver services to customers.  Accordingly, the majority of respondents—44.6 percent—are placing high importance on branch optimization for their strategic focus in 2015.

According to an IBM white paper, The Paradox of Banking 2015 – Achieving more by doing less, banks must transform from transaction centers into customer-centric firms by implementing such branch technologies as iPad access to the core, touch-screen kiosks and modernization of ATMs. When banks leverage emerging technologies and optimize their branch strategy, the paper states, they can provide the best service to their customers.

Coming in at a close second in strategies is mobile check capture, at 41.4 percent. Bankers plan on leveraging and expanding their investment in mobile banking platforms in 2015. This comes as no surprise, as banks plan to attract new deposit customers in 2015 by providing superior customer service. As survey respondents noted, they believe superior customer service entails delivering all the leading-edge technology of the “big banks,” but with the personal touch of a local bank. Mobile check capture allows banks to meet their customers’ needs to bank anytime and anywhere, as well as retain younger customers as they move away from home for college or to pursue other opportunities.

The second tier of strategic focus for financial institutions in 2015 includes:

  • Mobile Device Management (MDM). With the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) movement constantly growing, MDM solutions are an absolute necessity. So whether a financial institution’s employees and executives are accessing corporate applications and internal networks using personal devices or those that are company-owned, these solutions secure the most sensitive financial data.
  • P2P payments. Real-time P2P solutions provide customers an easy way to exchange money from one to another by allowing them to replace cash and checks with digital payments enabled by their phones.
  • Big data/business intelligence. Automated business intelligence solutions provide banks with powerful analytics that allow them to extract vital information from their endless supply of data to better understand the needs of each individual customer.

Without a doubt, technology will be a defining factor in satisfying customers and driving growth among financial institutions this year. Will your institution make the investment? For more information on this topic as well as a full range of projections for 2015, download CSI’s Executive Report: 2015 Banking Priorities.