It's time to build your simplicity capability.
Financial institutions are starting to realize that simplicity does not only improve the customer experience, resulting in trust and loyalty, but also reduces operational costs from redundant products, processes and dealing with customer complaints.
By Jin Zwicky, VP Experience Design, OCBC Bank, Singapore
How can banks achieve simplicity?
We can find great lessons from smart banking alternatives such as Simple, Moven, GoBank and Bluebird. What is less discussed is how to achieve simplicity in traditional banks that deal with a legacy of old processes, infrastructure and often don’t have luxury of starting afresh. Translating the big intent to achieve simplicity into realization is not easy.
The good news is that realizing simplicity is possible in any bank. As a design practitioner in one of the largest banks in Singapore, I’ve been leading a broad range of ‘Simplicity’ initiatives in the bank, such as website design, mobile banking, advisory tools, investment product communications as well as redesigning physical spaces. All of these initiatives have reaped measurable success in bottom line results and operational efficiency.
We saw double-digit increases in sales in investment and insurance products when we simplified the communications material. We saw 100% adoption rate in using the digital needs analysis tool in our top branches after we simplified the tool. We increased customers’ satisfaction in our account opening experience by simplifying the system. Finally, our simplified website was not only listed as The More Gorgeous and Simple Banking Website, but also we could save about 0.5 million dollars per year by reducing the number of pages in the website.
From years of my simplicity journey, I came to believe that ‘simplicity’ is not just a project. It is not just a team of simplicity specialists. It is a capability that we have to cultivate! Furthermore, it is an organizational culture that we have to create in order to achieve simplicity.
I came up with the following framework to illustrate this point.