New actors, new rules
New competitors are emerging, such as low-cost, direct, mobile banking, fintech and insurtech start-ups, largely due to changes in legislation, the advent of digital and technologies, which have dramatically impacted the profitability of traditional service providers in the banking and insurance sector, particularly in the current low-interest rate environment. The rules are changing and the barriers to entry are diminishing. Companies from other sectors - automobile manufacturers, distributors, and telecoms - are also joining the fray, with an investment capacity that enables them to compete with financial services leaders. Not to mention the Gafas, Google, Amazon, Facebook, and Apple, with their deep pockets and capacity to handle high volumes of data, who will inevitably be either partners or competitors.
Data and position in the value chain
Since the possession of data is vital, all of these new players are trying to deprive the historical establishments of their intermediary role, of their direct relationship with customers, and hence of their customer knowledge. Even the role of trusted third party is no longer exclusively their domain, with the arrival of blockchain. These new entrants are seen as innovators and are determining market trends. While they will not all survive in the long term, they oblige banks and insurance companies to respond, in order to maintain a central role in the value chain, and raise the issue of "make or buy".
New consumer demands
At the same time, as in other sectors, financial services have had to adapt to new habits and demands of an increasingly connected and well-informed client. The rapid adoption of dematerialization is a perfect illustration. Customers are quick to use multiple providers, in a constant search to find a more seamless, transparent, immediate, customized experience, available across multiple devices, and to benefit from reduced or even non-existent fees. While the multichannel approach has become a priority for the traditional players, mobile phones, now unquestionably the primary access point, raise the issue of the role of physical branches. The wide variety of financial services integrated into the Chinese instant messaging service WeChat suggests that further changes are to come in the West. It is a profound transformation in terms of distribution for the banks and insurance companies and represents an enormous opportunity for those capable of adapting faster than their competitors.
An on-going evolution of the sector
The traditional service providers are occupied with improving their processes, their digitization, the evolution of their computer systems and compliance with constantly changing regulations, and so find themselves in a position of followers, both in terms of offerings and time to market. The major players in the sector are becoming open platforms and adopting partnership policies to accelerate innovation and explore new territories, beyond their core business. It is not a revolution that is dawning, but rather a permanent race, in which the winners will be the boldest, most inventive and most agile. It is especially important for them to consider the human/digital relationship, to change mindsets and to train employees in the professions and services of tomorrow, supporting them with technologies such as AI, chatbots, and the IoT.
In this complex environment, in which all the parameters are changing, Equancy provides companies in the sector with a strategic overview of the internal changes and investment choices that should be implemented in an effective, prioritized, profitable and above all customer-oriented manner.
- To build a seamless, efficient customer experience, combining an end-to-end approach and performance measurement to optimize costs
- To redesign offers of products and services to make them simpler and more easily understood by customers, in line with new uses and habits
- To place real value on the human element, integrated into the relationship promise, through training and tools, and to make it a competitive factor, in a world where creativity, commitment and speed of execution are key
- To define a new role for branches in this revised customer experience, in which relationship rituals take precedence over a push sales approach.
- To change the company’s culture and put the customer at the heart of its strategy and of the concerns of all employees
- To explore application fields for data in all the company’s departments, in compliance with regulatory constraints
- To invest in new links in the value chain, and explore a broader scope in terms of offers, with a view to identifying new profitable sources of revenue.
We combine our set of expertise
Only a personalized combination of our expertise across a range of fields can help you to meet these difficult challenges.