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Roundtable: Fulfilling the next generation banking needs


Millennials are experiential crusaders with a strong ‘feel good, unique to me, and convenient’ attitude toward leading a life. Consequently, this attitude is reflective of their banking needs and money management expectations. But millennials struggle to obtain a personalised, gamified experience with all-time access and real-time updates from the banks and financial institutions.

To further understand millennial banking needs and what banks and financial institutions should focus on, let’s look at these three key spheres:

  1. Product
  2. Technology
  3. Data


1. What is driving innovation in millennial banking products?

Millennial generation falls between age 18 – 40 years. It is a massive age range and within that, there are clearly some real differences in terms of customer expectation. The digital world is creating new behavioural patterns and interaction principles, influencing the values of the younger generation. The drivers of innovative millennial banking products are:

  1. Digitalisation
  2. Personalisation
  3. Quick, flexible, and secure
  4. Intelligent interface
  5. Multi-channel and omni-channel experience
2. What are the top 3 considerations for building a millennial product proposition?

The top three consideration are:

  1. Personalisation: Banks should ingrain themselves in the daily life of their customer to understand their unique needs and make banking simple and relatable for their customers.
  2. Accessibility: The accessibility of banking products at the customer’s choice and convenience irrespective time, location, while subject to connectivity is paramount.
  3. Integration: Integration of digital capabilities such as chatbots, virtual assistants to extremely sophisticated products and services is important for the bank to create a frictionless experience.
3. How big is the millennial market opportunity for banks, neo, and/ or challenger banks, and fintech companies?

In today’s world, enormous number of people are unbanked and underbanked and they haven’t been served by the traditional banks. There is a great opportunity to tap into this market with digitalised financial services through Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). There are opportunities out in this world and plenty of space for every player to come up with an innovative product or service which can cater to a particular pain point of specific customer type. In future, we will witness several partnerships and collaboration between traditional banks and new generation fintechs.

Where you are in the world right now there is still a lot of opportunities out there, we are still at the beginning of this whole thing- Michael Berns


1. What % of millennial queries are the bots handling today?

The adoption rate of chatbots among millennials is roughly 50% and is much than the previous generations. The younger customers desire chatbots that understand customer behaviour through the past transaction, involvement in different brands, customer needs, and personal information. Based on this information chatbots answer queries of customers. It is not just a question-answer game but more of a personalised experience.

2. How is AI driving banking contact centers and robo-advisors?

Contact centres and robo-advisors play different roles when it comes to handling customer queries. Chatbots cannot replace these contact centres. The bots can solve only 60-70% of the problem depending on the specific use case. However, if banks use their contact centre wisely, they can quickly gain a larger market share and use it for different means.

Chatbots will not completely replace the customer service system but will repurpose the system where bots can be assigned to handle the daily routine task and use a contact centre for sophisticated products that need personal advice.

It’s usually a shift, it’s not just replacement – Huw Davies

3. Does technology help with millennial customer stickiness?

Fundamentally stickiness is not going to be purely driven by technology. Technology is a massive contributor, but we should focus on how technology can be used to solve a problem or make something better with great customer experience. So, it is about making sure technology plays the right role in balance.

If there is a service that will save me money in a transparent way when I make my transactions abroad or both or give me a slightly better interest and this is kind of what draws me to the bank. What keeps me is that I can switch things on and off when I’m in control of how much data do I want to show, and then I get a good idea in terms of what is the benefits – Michael Berns


1. Which third-party providers should banks obtain data through APIs for building millennial-focused products? (e.g., lifestyle, entertainment, gaming)
  1. It depends on what services are available. Open banking has been in place for a few years, it can access the account information for certain account types, but not everything.
  2. There’s an opportunity for banks to open up more data for the benefit of their customers and help them benefit by being a better advisor and creating secure relationships.

The concept of open everything society is not there, where multiple data sources can be accessible to API’s with a common consent mode and with the concept of digital identity. – Huw Davies

2. How comfortable are millennials in sharing their personal info digitally?
  1. Millennials are more idealistic and less constrained. They grew up in an age of internet access and digital devices and are more connected than any generation before them.
  2. Millennials trust almost every online platform, including the ones traditional banks are offering. The millennial generation is more open to sharing private information and have a different attitude toward privacy.
  3. Millennials find easy online registration and services with open ID than time-consuming paper-based procedures. They fail to the complicated approaches followed by traditional financial service providers.
  4. Millennials appreciate the quality of the service and are willing to sacrifice something to obtain the maximum level of satisfaction and benefits.
3. In the context of millennials, which is the key value delivering area that banks are trying to achieve with APIs?
  1. Open banking APIs accelerate innovation and collaboration, leading to expanded banking ecosystems that include more than just one financial service to make a consumer’s lifestyle better.
  2. Consumer’s consent remains the central part of an open banking strategy for building confidence among the customer and enhance their willingness to share their data.
  3. Alternatively, the banks which are able to provide the best consumer value proposition will be the winners.

In conclusion

What do you think about the behavioural change in the millennials and how they perceive the way they manage their money and their approach towards savings spending investing in post COVID era?

The acceleration in banking and financial services is happening because of the changing expectations of millennials. It is far more online, instant, intelligent, and gamified. Millennials are certainly changing the way financial services are consumed. I think it is a great opportunity and a risk for anyone in the industry now. A great opportunity for customers because I don’t think there have ever been more participants, trying to do things better for them. It puts a lot of power in the customer’s hands to use the services that solve the problems that work best for them. – Huw Davies

I see it as a big acceleration towards a digital-only format. You don’t start with the legacy process and the legacy system but you kind of really think the customer journey through in a digital, immediate, and fast way. I think that is adding a lot of new thoughts in terms of how to set this up. Some bigger changes have yet to come. – Michael Berns


Twimbit facilitated a roundtable conversation with two industry leaders, Huw Davies and Michael Berns. We discussed millennial banking from the concept of understanding next generation banking needs. Each participant’s view is expressed in their personal capacity and does not necessarily reflect the views of their respective organisations. We thank our panellists for their contribution.