"Prior to the lock-down caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, digital transformation featured high-up among financial service businesses’ objectives. The social distancing required has further increased the urgency with which businesses plan to achieve it, also revealing different levels of preparedness in the industry. In fact, as the world entered lock-down a number of activities that could be performed in-branch, such as checking balances, visiting a mortgage or investment advisor, interacting with a policy sales manager, or opening an account, were abruptly moved to a digital- only environment, thus exposing existing lacunae.
According to research by the Boston Consulting Group, 24% of consumers are planning not to return to their local branch in person even after lockdown and 12% enrolled into online or mobile banking for the first time during the pandemic. IDC also confirms that they “expect to see accelerated adoption of digital solutions”.
The need to accelerate digital-readiness and provide alternatives to face-to-face interactions is not just a consumer-facing issue but also affects operations. A report by Forrester into the impact of Appway Onboarding For Wealth Management found that onboarding times could be cut by 90% by automating processes and streamlining workflows. The same report found that faster onboarding meant they lost fewer accounts during the prospect-to -customer period and freed-up relationship manager’s time leading to a 5% incremental increase in new customer acquisitions."