Consumers want multichannel interactions in financial services
DC12-094 March 27, 2012PERSONAL TOUCH SHOULD BE KEY TO BANKS’ FUTURE PLANS, SAYS RESEARCH Research finds consumers want multichannel interactions with financial services companies to feel local and personalBanking customers around the world are cautious of social media when dealing withpersonal finance matters and prefer personalised services to be at the centre of theirrelationship, according to a new study by BT and Avaya. The study found that, despite the growing use of telephone, mobile and internetbanking in recent years, almost three quarters (73 per cent) of customers in the UK — and asimilar number in Germany, Spain and the US — see their local branch as the most vital linkwith their bank in the future – second only to cash machines. The results suggest that customers want the same personalised service that localbranches deliver, regardless of whether the interaction with their financial services provideris taking place in person, on the phone or using the internet. The findings of the survey present a particular opportunity for the UK financialservices sector as it looks to strengthen its relationship with customers. The study found thatjust over a third (34 per cent) of British consumers said they have a strong relationship withtheir bank. This compares to 40 per cent in Spain, over half (55 per cent) in the US and twothirds (64 per cent) in Germany. Tom Regent, President Global Banking & Financial Markets and Sales & Marketing,BT Global Services, said: ―Despite this being a tough time for financial servicesorganisations, these results show they can strengthen trust and build stronger relationshipswith their customers by delivering truly local and personalised services through everychannel they have. Innovations in customer service technology can help them achieve this.Whether it‘s in the branch or through remote channels such as mobile banking, technologiesnow exist that can link up customers to the right people and the right information in a cost-effective way. ―We know financial services organisations want to give their customers the mostrewarding and enjoyable experience possible, but banks in particular are facing some of theBT Group Communications BT Group plc Registered Office:BT Centre 81 Newgate Street London EC1A 7AJ81 Newgate Street Registered in England and Wales no. 4190816London EC1A 7AJ www.bt.com
toughest challenges of any sector and they have to prioritise investments that deliver to thebottom line. BT can help them achieve this at the branch level as well as in the multichannelcontact centre and deliver the service their customers demand.‖ The research also found that banking customers around the world remain cautious ofsocial media when dealing with personal finance matters. The study reveals that only fiveper cent of consumers see social media as an appropriate forum for financial conversationsand some 60 per cent said they wouldn‘t use Twitter, Facebook or similar sites to resolvecustomer service issues in banking. A telephone call to the contact centre remains the first stop for resolving a complaintor issue. However, customers are interested in new ways of dealing with their finances andexpect web-chat, co-browsing and video-chat with their financial services provider to grow.Mobile banking is also gaining popularity, with almost a quarter (24 per cent) having alreadytried it and more than one in three consumers (34 per cent) keen to make mobile payments.In the branch, 41 per cent want access to free wi-fi, suggesting a desire to interact withmultiple channels simultaneously. Mario DiMascio Vice President, Sales EMEA, Avaya, said: ―The days of thetraditional local bank manager might be behind us but customers are very clear that they stillwant the level of personal service he once provided albeit across different and often multiplechannels. Mobile and smartphone apps offer financial services companies levels of contactunparalleled in the history of the sector. It is a very personal medium and each interaction isan opportunity to engage a customer but is also an opportunity to fail, especially if theconsumer switches from one channel to another and receives inconsistent information andservice.‖ The research exposed further cultural trends, which suggests that the moretechnologically advanced we become as consumers, the less tolerant we‘re going to be ofpoor customer service in personal finance. It found that: Spanish consumers are using mobile browsers, smartphone apps, email and text messaging for banking more than most1 – but they‘re also the most likely to complain and research alternatives2. Germans seem more focussed on getting the best possible deal than quality of service3 The US has the most competitive market and US consumers seem the most satisfied with service and interactions4
. ENDS Enquiries about this news release should be made to the BT Group Newsroom on its24-hour number: 020 7356 5369. From outside the UK dial + 44 20 7356 5369 or to Rachel Bibby at Avaya on +44 (0)1483 309 602All news releases can be accessed at our web site: http://www.bt.com/newscentreNotes to EditorsThe survey was conducted by Davies Hickman Partners Ltd on behalf of BT and Avaya. It wasundertaken between 6 December 2011 and 3 January 2012. The total sample size was 2,000 UK,US, Spanish and German consumers and the survey was carried online.1 49 per cent of consumers in Spain want to be notified by email, text or phone when a better deal isavailable (compared to 39 per cent in the UK, 33 per cent in Germany, and 28 per cent in the US)2 68 per cent of Spanish consumers like to constantly review their financial products to check they‘regetting the best deal (compared to 52 per cent in the UK, 56 per cent in the US and 66 per cent inGermany)3 66 per cent of German consumers agreed, ‗I like to constantly review my financial products to check Iam getting the best deal‘ (compared to Spain 68 per cent, UK 52 per cent, US 56 per cent). Whilst 56per cent of German consumers are more likely to switch banks due to bad customer service than toget a slightly better deal (compared with 59 per cent in the US, 59 per cent in the UK and 45 per centin the Spain)4 Only 32 per cent in the US say they often or sometimes have to wait too long in the queue at a bankbranch (compared with 59% in the UK, 56% in Spain and 40% in Germany). Similarly, 27 per cent inthe US have to often or sometimes wait too long to have their complaint resolved (compared to 49%in Spain, 34% in the UK and 31% in Germany)
About BTBT is one of the world‘s leading providers of communications services and solutions, servingcustomers in more than 170 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked ITservices globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to its customers foruse at home, at work and on the move; broadband and internet products and services and convergedfixed/mobile products and services. BT consists principally of four lines of business: BT GlobalServices, BT Retail, BT Wholesale and Openreach.BT is the official communications services partner of the London 2012 Olympic and ParalympicGames. BT is also a sustainability partner of the Games and a Premier Partner of the London 2012Cultural Olympiad.In the year ended 31 March 2011, BT Group‘s revenue was £20,076m with profit before taxation of£1,717m.British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompassesvirtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges inLondon and New York.For more information, visit www.btplc.comAbout Avaya:Avaya is a global provider of business collaboration and communications solutions, providing unifiedcommunications, contact centers, networking and related services to companies of all sizes aroundthe world. For more information please visit www.avaya.com.Certain statements contained in this press release are forward-looking statements. These statementsmay be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "anticipate," "believe," "continue,""could," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "may," "might," "plan," "potential," "predict," "should" or "will" orother similar terminology. We have based these forward-looking statements on our currentexpectations, assumptions, estimates and projections. While we believe these expectations,assumptions, estimates and projections are reasonable, such forward looking statements are onlypredictions and involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond ourcontrol. These and other important factors may cause our actual results, performance orachievements to differ materially from any future results, performance or achievements expressed orimplied by these forward-looking statements. For a list and description of such risks and uncertainties,please refer to Avayas filings with the SEC that are available at www.sec.gov. Avaya disclaims anyintention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of newinformation, future events or otherwise.