How to Drive Digital Migration in Banking

/ 2 November 2021

Gone are the days when banking could only take place at your local branch. The convenience of app and online banking is a great benefit of the digital age. Account holders now expect an omnichannel experience, where tedious banking chores can be completed from the comfort of their own home. This demand has led to widespread digital migration in banking, which has led to financial institutions investing in new technology to improve their digital offering.

Despite the ever-growing supply and demand for digital migration, uptake is often a slow and complex process. Here, we take a look at ways to improve your channel migration strategy in banking, examining how banks can ensure a smooth transition for their customers, and improve the experience of users on digital platforms.

What is digital migration in banking?

Before we look at ways of improving digital migration, it’s important to understand its meaning. It’s a broad term that alludes to the transformation of services from traditional paper and in-person methods to online and digital ones. In banking, this often encompasses mobile applications and online banking.

The shift has been taking place since these technologies were developed but has sped up in recent years. That was especially true in 2020 and 2021, during the COVID-19 pandemic. Suddenly, a trip to the bank was no longer seemingly old-fashioned, but also not entirely unsafe. Self-isolation rules and restrictions may have even made visiting your local branch impossible.

What is an example of digital banking?

A simple example of digital banking is the ability to make payments and transfer money online. This can be done on a range of devices, but most predominantly on mobile banking apps – which banks are investing more of their time and money into improving.

What is digital adoption in banking?

While digital migration in banking refers to the movement of services from in-person to online, digital banking adoption is specifically about how many consumers have embraced that change.

As above, the adoption of digital banking was a gradual process down to a couple of factors:

  • Some of the existing adult population becoming familiar with digital technology
  • More tech-savvy Millennials and Zoomers (Generation Z) entering the workforce and using banking services
  • People simply discovering the benefits of digital banking, such as faster transactions, better visibility and convenience.

As with many things, however, that was amplified in 2020 with the outbreak of covid-19. A JP Morgan study found that 54% of consumers said they used more digital banking tools in 2020 than they did in 2019. This trend is expected to continue, despite the continued easing of restrictions. Consumers are wising up to the convenience of online banking. 45% even went as far as to say they now exclusively interact with their bank through digital channels.

That said, there are still customers who prefer more traditional methods. They seek the familiarity of an in-person experience and the hands-on assistance it provides. However, both groups want easy interaction with their bank. Therefore, converting more resistant customers is about ensuring an easy transition, with customer support readily available.

How do customers migrate to digital channels?

To migrate to digital channels, banking customers typically need to set up and verify an account. They usually require their existing bank details along with some form of identification (to prove it’s them setting up the account). After that, it’s a case of getting to grips with how things work to truly adopt digital banking.

Naturally, customers may have questions about how things work. The migration doesn’t always happen overnight. That’s exactly why it’s important for banks to have support available for both setting up and using their account…

Migrating banking customers to digital channels – employees are key

One of the most important things to consider when deploying new digital banking tools is their ease of use. It’s vital that employees fully understand new software that can offer support to clients. That’s where training comes into play. The problem for many organizations is upskilling employees in new technology, while still focusing on driving migration.

While there are various ways to train staff quickly, training through a gamification experience has been particularly popular and effective in recent years. Gamification means using game-like elements to better engage your workforce. Simple examples include the use of levels and collecting points while learning something new. Forget those snooze-worthy presentations or lengthy, complex whitepapers. Gamification makes learning both fun and rewarding. It ensures your employees will actually absorb new information by drawing on their natural drive to compete and seek rewards.

Sounds intriguing, right? But how does it actually work for banks and financial institutions looking to quickly evolve digital migration?

Gamification in a modern channel migration strategy

A national bank in Australia recently demonstrated the effectiveness of gamification when encouraging employees to embrace digital migration in banking. The company had invested heavily in new digital solutions for its customers, but was struggling with uptake. Employees simply did not feel confident advising customers on these new solutions. The bank knew from past experience that staff generally did not retain long-term knowledge from traditional training sessions. They wanted an engaging solution that did more than simply transfer information about digital banking adoption.

The solution was a gamified training journey built by 3radical’s Voco software. It provided a tailored experience with interactive videos, customer scenarios, and follow-up assessments. All videos and scenarios were themed around employees engaging with customers on the new digital offerings and adoption of digital banking. Staff were rewarded with points, earned from interacting with the software and doing well in the assessments. Points were collated on a leader board, while special badges were also awarded on each user’s personalized Achievement Wall. Staff were then further rewarded with entries into a prize draw.

In order to gauge the success of the experience, employees were asked to complete a survey before and afterwards. The surveys allowed them to state their level of confidence in digital banking technologies and provide feedback. Rolled out throughout 2018 and early 2019, the experience was voluntary for all bankers. Even so, it was accessed by 7,000 employees, with an 88% completion rate.

Perhaps even more impressive was the positive impact on the bank’s overall digital migration strategy. It has seen a significant reduction in over-the-counter branch transactions, along with an increase in mobile logins. The number of ‘Digital Advocates’ within the company (employees who promote the digital offering), has risen from 9% to 59%. Furthermore, banker confidence in advising customers on digital adoption in banking has increased by 77 points. Many employees described the experience as more engaging and unique than traditional methods.

Crafting your channel migration strategy with gamification

If you want to migrate more of your customers to the digital tools you have invested so much money and time in, gamification could be the answer. Whether it’s digital migration in banking or another sector altogether, it’s a sure-fire way to help employees feel more confident when advising customers on new methods. And what better way to convince customers than by having staff advocate on your behalf?

Here at 3radical, we take a tailored approach to gamified training solutions. That means we take time to listen to the needs of your business before diving right in. We create a bespoke gamified training and development program that is sure to engage your employees. It could also help them retain new knowledge in the long run. Contact our team to tell us more about your project.

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