You and your bank — a behind-the-screens look

Blog /You and your bank a behind-the-screens look

There’s a 70 percent chance you’re reading this on your smartphone. Or maybe your tablet. Or maybe your laptop PC. And there’s an equally strong chance you recently contacted your bank to make a deposit on the same device. Gone are the days when making a deposit meant putting your documents in order, driving to your branch and completing your banking (remember deposit slips?). A recent study from NTT DATA, “Don’t Fear Modernizing Your Core,” showed “Most customers want an experience from their banks similar to what they already get from other online experiences — convenience, consistency and real-time transactions that are available on their mobile and online devices.” Bottom-line: the financial services industry needs to move quickly to meet customer expectations or risk losing ground to an increasing number of fintech disruptors. Unfortunately, the same study found a sobering fact: “80 percent of U.S. bankers would like to modernize their core deposit systems (CDBS), and they see a wide range of benefits in innovation, functionality and overall financial return. But only 15 percent of bankers expect to start an installation of a new CDBS in the next three years.”

From the consumer’s perspective, learning how to bank from your smartphone involves navigating an app. Consumers can easily pay bills, transfer funds and download statements. However, from the bank’s perspective, enabling that experience is significantly more complicated. Getting this functionality in the hands of customers involves infrastructure changes, application updates, and massive network connections—all made in a highly secure environment. Given the competitive landscape, banks and other financial institutions need to create an omnichannel experience (from smartphone apps to automated processes and all the applications in-between), which not only works for their customers, but also works for their organizations and, ultimately, their investors.

For many financial services clients, NTT DATA Services begin their conversations by determining where their customers are experiencing friction in their experience. We’ve developed a proprietary solution, called a Customer Friction FactorSM (CFF) Assessment to help determine the best business outcome for the bank’s digital transformation, optimizing investment to provide the greatest lift in customer experience. The basic calculation of CFF assessment score is uncomplicated. Points are added for factors that take time or energy from a customer, such as being put on hold while an employee searches for another person to help with a problem. Points are taken away for things that simplify a transaction, such as a text to a customer. The CFF score is just like a golf score — the lower the score, the better.

NTT DATA’s CFF Service allows companies to achieve three important goals related to customer friction:

  1. Understand. Develop an understanding of their customers and how they conduct business while identifying and quantifying customer friction within that experience.
  2. Gain insights. Identify the root causes of customer friction, plot a roadmap and prioritize initiatives that will deliver the greatest improvements in customer experience.
  3. Improve the experience. Through finding and fixing high-friction areas, companies can deliver the type of pain-free service that delights customers while reducing or containing internal costs.

There’s little doubt, developing a desirable, omnichannel experience is critical to attracting and maintaining happy, satisfied customers.

Finally, we are living in an age when Millennials and Digital Natives are setting the expectations for a frictionless customer experience, and that includes a superior experience with their banks. And while they don’t currently have a great deal of disposable income and a strong need for banking services, they are raising the expectations of consumers who do have significant assets (e.g., their parents). My suggestion: It is time for financial services companies to become customer obsessed organizations that use an understanding of their customer’s needs, preferences, and expectations, to drive the transformation agenda. This is a shift in thinking that needs to happen from the boardroom to the server room. Luckily, we’re here to help.

The International Data Corporation (IDC), recently recognized NTT DATA as a “Leader” in the “IDC MarketScape: Worldwide Omni-Channel Engagement IT Implementation Services 2017 Vendor Assessment” (#US40831016, March 2017) report — a comprehensive evaluation of 12 professional service providers that perform IT implementations for financial institutions’ short- and long-term omnichannel engagement.

“In IDC Financial Insights' opinion, NTT DATA has an impressive approach to soliciting and incorporating customer feedback which is tightly integrated with the firm's client retention strategy and approach to improve systems integration delivery consistency in financial services,” said Marc DeCastro Research Director, Consumer Banking Engagement Strategies, IDC.

NTT DATA builds, integrates and operates mission-critical systems for financial institutions, including banking, capital markets and payment and card processors. Also, NTT DATA has significantly expanded its North America business and customer engagement capabilities with its 2015 acquisition of Carlisle & Gallagher Consulting Group as well as other significant acquisitions.

“When implementing IT for omnichannel engagement, our consultants work with clients to provide full life-cycle services, from the initial analysis to application management,” said Kaz Nishihata, Executive Vice President, NTT DATA Corporation. “Being recognized as a leader by IDC highlights our commitment to meet and exceed the strategic goals of our clients, which is demonstrated through strong retention and continued business growth.”

To learn more about NTT DATA’s digital services for the financial industry, visit

Post Date: 4/24/2017

Matt Leach Matt Leach

About the author

On his first day as an engineer, someone decided that Matt Leach should write requirements. He soon discovered that project success is not just about technology, but a holistic solution that solves the right problem. Since then, he has helped organizations better understand their business and their customers while delivering solutions that delight both. Currently, Mr. Leach is a Vice President in NTT DATA’s Digital, Applications and Information Management Practice where he leads the Business Analysis and Project Management Practices.