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Changing times for the bank sector

On 18 April, Eivind Kolding, CEO of Danske Bank, was guest speaker at PA Consulting Group’s executive seminar. Eivind explained how – despite the fact that the services offered by banks have not evolved significantly over the past few years – new customer demands are making dramatic change inevitable. According to Eivind, banks need to become more client-focused and to make better use of technology in improving the service they offer to customers.

“Applying for a car loan using a smart phone should only take 10 minutes, and we also need to speed up the process for housing loans…This is the only way to focus entirely on the customer and make processes as easy and quick as possible,” says Eivind.

PA’s Daniel Meere, financial expert, agrees with this approach:

“The winners in the digital world are the companies that focus on the needs of the customers, and that are able to effectively use technology in order to make services more efficient and attractive: in short, make it as easy as possible for the customer to do business with the bank.”

Customer behaviour is changing
While the business model for banks has essentially remained the same for the past 400 years, far-reaching changes are now taking place as a result of digital developments, which have increased customer expectations.

Eivind explains: “Customer behavior has changed. A decrease in the number of bank branches and the arrival of new digital products has caused a stir and, to some extent, this stir has damaged Danske Bank’s reputation. We need to change this in a positive direction, and we want to earn a better reputation. Our customers are quite content with Danske Bank; however, two years from now we want the level of customer satisfaction to be among the highest.”

In order to increase customer satisfaction, a more personal service and an increased number of digital products are required.

“Danske Bank will continue to offer our customers face-to-face advice, however we need to consider which products and services can be digitalised. Danske Bank leads the way in developing digital solutions, such as online meetings and mobile banking, which make it easier for customers to gain control over their finances and give them easier access to our services. I believe this development will help us change the way people perceive our bank.” says Eivind.

PA’s Daniel Meere, financial expert, reinforces this message:

“A bank shouldn’t use its manual resources on processes that can be digitalised. Some tele companies, for instance, outsource technical issues to their customers, and this is one way to take advantage of the new possibilities offered by social media. People more or less live their lives in cyber space, and this is also where they share their experiences. That is why social media is critical to a company’s reputation: while it may be used to increase pressure on a company, it can also be used to improve a business’s  reputation. If a company is run in a proper, ethical and professional manner, rumour will spread rapidly online.”


If you want to know how PA can help you survive and thrive in turbulent times, please contact us now.

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