The global pandemic has created an unprecedented digital banking pivot point. Customers are now more demanding than ever before. Covid-19 triggered a reduction in the usage of ATMs and cash. Fewer stores were open, and for many people, touch screens and keypads were potential vectors of infection. Instead consumers found themselves utilizing digital payments including contactless, mobile and digital wallets, and many for the first time.

Business as usual is simply not enough. Banks and financial institutions are facing real challenges in moving away from product centricity and legacy technologies to customer centricity and personalised seamless solutions. Most financial institutions entered a crisis mode of building digital capabilities that allowed consumers to bank without branches, now more than ever banks must rethink the definition of ‘digital banking’ with the application of data, analytics, technology, innovation and people that will transform customer experiences.

A few banks are finding success, but many don’t have a real plan and lack senior executive support, leaving technologists to settle the big strategic decisions. Meanwhile fintechs are showing how to do it right by going all-digital, and quickly. They are responding to changing customer expectations with faster, better, and cheaper services, altering the competitive landscape.

Consumers’ new digital behaviors are here to stay, and banks have to move quickly in delivering on their customers’ increasing expectations. Banks should try to meet customer needs rather than selling products. Products and services should be redesigned around customers’ needs and wants rather than the traditional emphasis on sales and revenues.

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