Why do banks and retails care about UX and digital?

Digitalization, user experience (UX) and cloud computing are some of the major trends that have seen an increasing and widespread adoption in the financial services, banks and retail industry lately.

While digital only retail have been around for a long time, digital-only banks have also emerged in the last few years such as ATOM, UK’s first such bank. Transactions only happen via online and mobile. The bank also emphasizes on offering exceptional front-end service plugged into a state-of-the-art back end platform, thus creating a favorable user-experience.

Globally, more innovative incumbent banks and financial institutions are moving rapidly to embrace digital. Instead of having to queue up at a branch, they can make payments using their tablets or smartphones. Technological advancements have made such things possible. With reference to this, financial institutions are going all out to make user experiences favorable. Take for instance, Citi Bank has a tablet app that has interactive, graphic displays to help customers visualize current spending and plan for their future.

By creating a single digital banking platform, with standardization, coordination and communication amongst all channels, banks will be able quickly deploy new products and services and also enhance user-experience across all channels. The journey for digital banking has just begun and taken baby steps in the form of app-banking, e-wallet, personal finance management tools, however all these disruptive technological advancements have established themselves very well.

End user experience, is also getting serious attention. This includes the aesthetics of the experience, ease of use as well as the overall comfort of the entire experience. It is not enough to find what one is looking for while shopping easily on a retail commerce site, but the pleasing nature of the product presentation as well as the ease of payment and return or support of the bought product. This is rapidly becoming important across all industries.

However, the gift of disruptive technology has been cloud computing. It sets the stage for a new approach to IT that enables individuals and businesses to choose how they will acquire or deliver IT services, without constraining themselves on the traditional software and hardware licensing models. Disruptive in its own capacity, it has revolutionized enterprise’s IT delivery models. It has the potential to make IT companies more responsive and to focus its resources on delivering new services that fuel innovation and accelerate the business, with lowered costs and greater agility.

A number of trends that are fueling increased adoption of cloud. First of all, the cloud is becoming more widely and cheaply available across a wider geographic area. Secondly, as understanding of the cloud has increased, security concerns have decreased. This is prompting even large businesses with significant security concerns — such as financial and healthcare companies — to switch to the cloud. Better understanding, acceptance and greater knowledge by executives regarding cloud computing will help greater adoption of disruptive technologies over the year.

The article was originally published  in the CIOL on February 16, 2016 and is re-posted here by permission.

 

Shankar Janardhanan

Senior Vice President, Global Practice Head – Digital, Virtusa. Shankar has overall experience of more than 30 years across India, Australia and US region, At Virtusa, his responsibility includes Global P&L of the high growth Digital Practice of 1800 associates and grow multiple technology streams of this Practice - UX & UI, Mobility, Customer experience management, Enterprise Information Management and Cloud. A silver medallist in Industrial Engineering from NIT (then REC), Trichy, Shankar is an alumnus of IIM Ahmedabad.

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