It’s safe to say that the financial services (FS) sector has experienced astronomical change over the last few years. The rapid and significant development we’ve seen in tech has led to challenger banks, fintech and big techs redefining the industry. These organisations can go further than traditional banks to meet customers’ needs and this is setting new standards when it comes to customer expectations in retail banking.

Over 2023, we can expect to see these standards evolving ever further. In the short term, banks and FS organisations will be attempting to pivot to better meet the needs and address the concerns of their customers. Understandably, the swiftly worsening cost of living crisis is currently a huge priority for many customers.

Communication is key to meet customer expectations

As such, we’ll see the forward-thinking organisations placing customers at the forefront of their activity in the coming months. The banks which go the extra mile to reassure and inform their customers will see the most success in this respect.

For example, in the face of recent rising interest rates, millions of UK homeowners with a mortgage were thrown into panic and confusion. Some banks and lenders were able to rapidly and proactively communicate what these changing rates meant for individual customers.

Others were not so helpful. Especially in the face of great financial and societal uncertainty, those which are able to reassure their customers in a proactive and empathetic manner will come out on top. In order to achieve this, we can expect to see banks continuing to progress their digital transformation initiatives and further integrating the relevant Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) capabilities.

In order for incumbent banks to be successful in their digital transformation journey and achieving optimal customer experiences, they need to address the employee experience as well. Ensuring that employees have the applications, visibility, tools and means to effectively address customer needs will be the critical factor in differentiating banks.