Over the past year, transaction banks have faced declining client satisfaction rates, largely as a result of changing market dynamics, including digitalization and its impact on client expectations. Leading banks are responding by investing in digital strategies and solutions to improve the client experience and win more business. In this blog, we’ll take a look at satisfaction trends for corporate clients and the opportunities for reversing those trends.
Corporate client satisfaction levels
For the past five years, CGI has partnered with GTNews to track the transaction banking market—both from the perspective of corporates, as well as the banks that serve them. The 2016 Banking Transaction Survey saw dramatic changes in corporate satisfaction, with the key measurement of satisfaction dropping 19% in a year to the lowest level since the research started in 2013. All segments of corporates showed a drop in satisfaction. Recent CGI discussions with bankers as part of our CGI Global 1000 outlook have not dispelled these results.
In addition, 62% of corporates in 2016 said they were reviewing their bank relationships and procuring alternative bank and non-bank service providers, even across core services such as cash management and payments.
Opportunities for turning the tide
What can transaction banks do to reverse these trends? Based on corporate input from our 2016 research, here are some key opportunities:
- Improve access to bank services: Over the past few years, the ease of interaction between corporates and their banks has become an increasingly important factor when it comes to selecting a new bank, as well as remaining loyal to an existing bank partner. Ease of interaction can be defined in several ways: ease of technology access, ease of integrating processes, and ease of combining multiple banks to gain more convenient, lower cost access to financial resources. Corporates are demanding much more from their bank partners in terms of “friction free” access to services. They want the ability to access multiple banks from a single portal and seamlessly move from one service to another without the need for additional log-ins or channels.
- Integrate digital services into corporates’ businesses: As corporates invest heavily in their own digital transformation programs, they’re becoming frustrated with bank partners that aren’t able to support integration of bank services into the corporates’ supply chain. For many, their demands for standardized data and processing standards have not yet been met. This delay in providing seamless digital services is causing many corporates to turn to non-bank providers. As a result, leading transaction banks are accelerating their efforts to integrate digital services with corporate clients’ businesses to deliver a seamless corporate experience.
- Deliver secure digital services: Corporate criteria for selecting new partners has shifted considerably—away from a focus on cost to a focus on the quality of secure digital services. Corporates want to work with providers that offer the highest standards for data security, fraud prevention and proactive monitoring/resolution.
- Ensure digital services are aligned with corporate processes: On the counter-side, while almost a quarter of corporates are reviewing relationships due to security concerns, the more predominant reasons for review are offered services and economies of scale. Corporates are looking for services aligned to their business processes rather than just products. The digital ease with which these new services can be integrated also is critical as discussed above.
Overall, corporates are looking for banks that provide easy integration of bank services, a seamless customer experience across channels, and the ability to integrate bank services in the supply chain—all while providing a totally secure environment. While this is a tough challenge for transaction banks, forerunners are making the investment and moving ahead.
We are currently launching our 2017 GTNews research, which we will publish in October this year, so please stay tuned for that. In the meantime, feel free to contact me if you want to further discuss these findings.