4 Ways Investment Banks Can Create Customer-Friendly Experiences

Investment Banks Can Create Customer-Friendly Experiences

Compared to the average retail bank, investment banks have a very different set of challenges when it comes to managing customer experience. They offer a significantly more specialized and sophisticated service and as such, target a niche audience that are both experienced and knowledgeable.

While it’s still important to be marketable and competitive in the space, investment banks don’t need to spend too much time on “frills” and quick wins. The way they deliver the best customer experience is with a focus on speed, accuracy and efficiency.

With a great experience, differentiation from competitors is a given. A huge number of investment banks have yet to wake up to the idea of customer experience transformation, so there’s a significant opportunity for those that do to get a larger slice of the pie.

The fact is, client expectations are changing. In research from Accenture, it was found that 78% of users now expect tailored solutions, 76% want self-directed experiences, and 76% also monitor and evaluate vendor performance. Competing on the quality of products and services alone is no longer enough. Investment banks must go above and beyond to win over new customers and delight and retain their existing ones.

Competing on the quality of products and services alone is no longer enough. Investment banks must go above and beyond to win over new customers and delight and retain their existing ones.

Here are four ways investment banks can start designing brilliant customer experiences this year:

1. Align customer experience with business objectives

“Selling” a new focus on customer experience to executive stakeholders can often prove to be a barrier to transformation.

As with all internal resistance, your most important weapon is communication. Finding ways to express the value of customer experience in a way that resonates with your audience is key for getting them on your side. When people feel involved with a decision, they tend to be more supportive of the overall process.

If you can make the case that a customer experience transformation will support business objectives, you are much more likely to get the time and resources you need to make changes. Above all, make it clear that better customer experiences mean higher revenue. Research by McKinsey found brands that improve CX see revenues increase as much as 10-15% while also lowering the cost to serve by 15-20%.

2. Make it a collaborative process – but be selective about who you involve

A customer experience transformation must be a collaborative process. It’s key to involve staff from multiple departments so they can collectively champion the cause and trigger a shift towards a more agile, customer-centric culture.

A team of trusted and empowered individuals will always get more done than a siloed department. However, things can start to go awry when there are too many chefs in the kitchen. When it comes to workshops and research, only invite people that you know have the time and knowledge to contribute effectively.

A team of trusted and empowered individuals will always get more done than a siloed department.

Where possible, you should also try to avoid lengthy approvals processes. We appreciate that this is much easier said than done, but when the minutiae of every decision and change is subject to rounds of scrutiny and edits from multiple stakeholders, things rarely get done.

3. Speak your customers’ language

Great experiences in investment banking are clear, smooth and personalized. But they also have an element of exclusivity to them. When it comes to retail banking, a key objective is to disseminate financial jargon into relatable educational content that empowers customers to make decisions. Investment bank customers on the other hand, tend to already be experts in their field.

Anything that can be interpreted as “talking down” to your customers is likely to be frowned upon. So, don’t feel that you need to get rid of all the “jargon” – this is the language that your customers speak. Instead, focus your energy on simplifying customer journeys and identifying opportunities for personalization.

4. Don’t be afraid of disruption

The vast majority of established investment banks are older companies that have ingrained processes – often including legacy equipment and a lack of proper digitization.

To effectively undergo a transformation, disruption needs to be embraced wholeheartedly.

Leading the change towards a customer-centric culture means tearing down silos and carefully rebuilding client communications, credit management, onboarding and every other process that involves customers. With digitally-enhanced channels that are properly managed and measured, you can enhance customer experience across the board.

Would you like to know more about how investment banks can effectively manage their customer experience? Check out our free, comprehensive guide.

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