Five ways banks sabotage the onboarding process

May 29, 2024

Banking onboarding refers to the process where customers begin their relationship with a bank by setting up an account or service. Despite technological advancements, many customers face significant hurdles during this initial phase, impacting their overall experience and potentially their long-term loyalty to the bank.

According to the findings of a new global client onboarding survey conducted by Forrester, more than 64% of banks report lost deals and revenue as a result of issues in the current time-consuming onboarding process, with more than 20% of respondents indicating they've lost between 26%-50% of new business opportunities as a result of onboarding issues. Here, we explore various challenges associated with banking onboarding processes.

One of the primary issues is the complicated and time-consuming application process. Many banks still require customers to navigate through complex forms and provide extensive documentation without adequate guidance or assistance. This lack of support can be daunting, especially for those who are not digitally savvy or are unfamiliar with banking terminologies.

Restricted communication and lack of transparency also pose significant challenges. Customers often receive limited updates about the status of their applications, which can lead to mistrust and frustration. The absence of clear, consistent communication can make customers feel undervalued and disconnected from the bank, which is detrimental to building long-term relationships.

Inefficiencies in document management further exacerbate the onboarding experience. Customers are frequently asked to submit the same documents multiple times or are abruptly requested to provide additional paperwork. This redundancy not only wastes time but also adds to the customer's frustration, especially if these requests come without prior notice or explanation.

Excessive turn-around-time for completing the onboarding process can have direct financial implications for both the customer and the bank. Delays in account activation or credit approvals can hinder customers' ability to conduct timely business transactions, affecting their cash flow and operational efficiency.

Moreover, many banks fail in personalizing the onboarding experience. A generic approach to guiding customers through available products and services often overlooks individual needs and preferences. This lack of tailored assistance can prompt customers to switch to other banks that better recognize and respond to their specific requirements.

To address the myriad challenges in the banking onboarding process, an integrated solution like ONBOARD that employs modern technology and customer-centric strategies can dramatically enhance efficiency and customer satisfaction. Here’s how each component of the solution can be implemented:

1. One Form for Multiple Products: Banks can streamline their application processes by utilizing a single form that applicants can use to sign up for multiple products. This reduces the complexity and redundancy often experienced during the application phase. By simplifying the process, customers can select their desired services from one interface, enhancing user experience and reducing administrative burdens.

2. Timely Status Updates & Follow-ups: Implementing automated systems for regular updates and follow-ups can significantly improve communication transparency. This system would notify customers about the status of their application via their preferred communication channels such as SMS, email, or mobile app notifications. Regular updates can build trust and keep customers informed throughout the onboarding process.

3. Artificial Intelligence-based OCR (Optical Character Recognition): Utilizing AI-based OCR technology can expedite the data entry process by accurately scanning documents and extracting relevant information. This reduces errors and saves time by eliminating the need for manual data entry.

4. Fetch Data from KYC Registries for Automated Form-Filling: Integration with KYC (Know Your Customer) registries can enable banks to automatically populate forms with verified customer data. This not only speeds up the process but also minimizes the documentation burden on customers, enhancing their onboarding experience.

5. Digital Identity and Document Checks: Employing digital tools for identity verification and document authentication ensures accuracy and security. These tools can quickly verify identities and check document authenticity, reducing the risk of fraud and ensuring compliance with regulatory standards.

6. Automated Regulatory Checks/Reporting: Automation of compliance checks and reporting can streamline regulatory processes. By integrating systems that automatically perform these checks, banks can ensure they adhere to legal standards without manual intervention, thereby speeding up the onboarding process while maintaining compliance.

7. Digital Records and Audit Trails: Keeping digital records and maintaining audit trails not only helps in regulatory compliance but also aids in resolving any discrepancies or issues that might arise later. Digital records simplify data retrieval and management, making the entire process more efficient and transparent.

Deploying this comprehensive solution not only resolves the immediate inefficiencies of the onboarding process but also paves the way for a more resilient and customer-focused banking environment. Enhanced digital capabilities ensure that banks can adapt quickly to changes in regulations and customer expectations, which are critical in a fast-evolving financial landscape.

Ultimately, the successful implementation of such a comprehensive digital onboarding solution will lead to a win-win situation for both banks and their customers. Banks will benefit from increased efficiency, reduced costs, and lower customer attrition rates. Customers, on the other hand, will enjoy a quicker, more transparent, and hassle-free onboarding experience, likely increasing their overall satisfaction and trust in their banking provider. This strategic approach not only addresses the current challenges but also sets the stage for sustainable growth and customer engagement in the digital age.

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Five ways banks sabotage the onboarding process
May 29, 2024

The blog highlights banking onboarding issues and suggests a tech-based solution to improve efficiency and customer satisfaction.