Meeting the Self-Service Needs of Today’s Financial Consumers
Today’s financial consumers are demanding more self-service options than ever before. It’s time for financial services and insurance (FSI) companies to deliver.
As members of the digitally native population mature in their financial lives, they come equipped with unique preferences and habits. Chief among these expectations is the ability to engage digitally—via the web or mobile—with all the organizations they choose to do business with, including financial institutions and insurance providers.
In-person interactions at a bank branch, with a financial advisor or an agent remain important for more complex or sensitive transactions. However, consumers increasingly desire the flexibility and convenience of completing simpler transactions on the go and on their own time. Indeed, according to a recent Salesforce study, over 42% of customers are initiating relationships with FSIs via the web or an app. That figure is even higher for specific segments, like banking, at 78%.
By offering consumers more self-service options, FSIs can also achieve superior efficiency while reducing operating costs and the overhead associated with maintaining a physical footprint. Digital access is also a boon for financial firms’ employees, allowing them to redeploy the time previously spent on simple tasks to higher-value, more strategic priorities.
The evolution of self-service in financial services
The self-service revolution in banking primarily began with the introduction of the automated teller machine in 1967, which allowed bank customers to withdraw cash on the go for the first time. Today, ATMs offer a wide range of self-service capabilities, from depositing cash and checks to verifying account balances and transferring funds among accounts.
But today’s consumers desire the ability to conduct a much broader portfolio of self-service financial tasks online and on the go. This includes everything from check reorders and travel notifications to setting up recurring fund transfers and bill pay. They also prefer to update contact information, change beneficiaries, make policy updates, apply for new loans, open additional accounts or policies and report suspected fraud—all on their laptop or mobile device.
Many FSIs maintain a forms library on their website that catalogs requests like the ones above.
Unfortunately, many of the documents in these libraries are static PDFs, which must be downloaded, filled, printed, scanned, uploaded and emailed—a frustrating process that requires the right software and hardware and is no more convenient than visiting a branch or local office.
Other forms may be completed directly on the website, but the user interface (UI) is often clunky and requires pinching or zooming to properly read from a mobile device. Additionally, internal users often have limited back-end workflow capabilities that would help make the processing of the request more efficient.
At best, forms libraries today provide an inconsistent experience to consumers, who must navigate digitized forms for certain requests and static PDFs for others. At worst, a poor experience can cause consumers to abandon the process entirely, harming a brand’s reputation and cross-sell potential. Fortunately, FSIs can uplevel their self-service options by ditching the status quo.
Uplevel self-service with dynamic agreements
The time has come for FSIs to replace static forms libraries with dynamic agreements. With DocuSign Web Forms, companies can transform the traditional online forms library into a more user-friendly experience to meet the demands of today’s financial consumers.
Web Forms offers a modern, interactive UI that’s a step above static PDFs. Thanks to a mobile responsive interface and conditional logic that only presents users with additional fields as needed, customers enjoy a dramatic reduction in the time it takes to complete and submit a form. FSIs can also custom brand the form experience to match their institution’s look and feel, helping to build affinity and trust.
Employees benefit as well from the no-code, quick-to-deploy solution. Web Forms features a simple drag-and-drop functionality that lets users build and customize forms with clicks instead of code. With advanced workflow capabilities, FSIs can auto-route completed forms to the correct teams to handle the next steps in the process.
Maintaining tight security protocols is especially important in financial services, and one study shows that almost 30% abandon forms because of security concerns. Financial services and insurance firms can rest easy knowing that Web Forms leverages the same trusted security functionality as the core DocuSign eSignature platform.
For added security, FSIs can integrate identity verification into the process for certain higher risk self-service requests, such as funds transfer and beneficiary change requests.