The Bankers Dilemma

The Bankers Dilemma

The Bankers Dilemma

How to stay close to customers when customer transactions are becoming more remote

30 years ago there were 20,500 bank branches in the UK; by 2018 the number had fallen to about 8,000. A House of Commons briefing paper published in February 2018 attributes this seismic change to financial innovation, falls in demand for the use of cheques and increased use of electronic payment services. The impact of the financial crisis and regulatory costs have also played their part. It means that banks are becoming less visible to their customers and relationships more remote.

At the same time competition has intensified, with new challenger banks offering strong, customer-centric propositions and even opening High Street branches. Unlike traditional banks, these brands are not hampered by unwieldy legacy systems; instead they adapt quickly to changes in customer behaviours, profiles and needs. With customer numbers in the millions, banks must look to defend their customer base by taking advantage of the many opportunities they have to develop and nurture stronger customer relationships.

In this paper we explore how to stay close to customers when transactions become more remote and offer some personal thoughts on what we think constitutes best practice.


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