Banks put pedal to the metal in digital transformation

October 08, 2020 | 17:08
The banking industry has been recently abuzz with digital transformation as lenders embark on their journey to become more tech-enabled to keep pace with disruptive technologies. Notwithstanding, many are still unsure about what digital transformation entails, and whether customers would welcome innovations.
banks put pedal to the metal in digital transformation
Digital transformation is all the rage in the banking industry

Most lenders are upping the ante in consumer experience, with some trying to blend experiences from the physical and digital worlds.

The Fourth Industrial Revolution has changed the whole economy, especially the financial landscape with disruptive innovations.

Vietnam reported a growth rate of 200 per cent in mobile banking services, with more than 30 million people using the banking payment system on a daily basis. The country also boasts more than 70 credit institutions, not to mention payment intermediaries such as e-wallets providing internet and mobile payment services. The total value of online financial transactions has reached over VND7 quadrillion ($304.35 billion), and VND300 trillion ($13 billion) via mobile apps.

However, infusing a digital mindset into a traditional banking culture can pose many challenges.

The current strong trend of electronic transactions is a premise for banks to invest in the digital game. In fact, both small- and medium-sized to large banks have treated digital as a priority with articulated strategies, talent, and agile ways of working.

As one of the most prestigious, professional, tech-enabled commercial banks in Vietnam, Techcombank has become a pioneer, launching “zero fee” on its F@st Ebank platform to greatly enhance its customers' experience and realise its commitment to make banking smarter and faster.

banks put pedal to the metal in digital transformation
Techcombank has launched "zero fee" on its F@st Eban platform

Meanwhile, VietinBank also offered VietinBank iPay Mobile, while BIDV established the signature BIDV Digital Banking Centre in 2019 to gain the first-mover advantage in exploiting the vast potential.

Vietcombank has become the very first lender to directly connect to the national public services portal to provide online payment solutions, in which a Single Sign On mechanism (SSO) has been developed on the basis of the bank’s internet banking services.

Other small- and medium-sized lenders are also ramping up efforts to harness the immense benefits of this evolving trend. A few months ago, HDBank placed its focus on trade finance, becoming the first lender in Vietnam to provide trade finance services on a blockchain platform as a move to increase its ability to extend trade financing to more corporations.

Southern-based lender OCB is also constantly exploring more ways to innovate products. The number of active online users for the OCB OMNI mobile app and OMNI internet banking platform has almost doubled since the end of 2019 and the total number of online transactions in the first seven months of 2020 has already surpassed last year’s total.

Undoubtedly, disruptive technology is poised to shake up the financial landscape.

banks put pedal to the metal in digital transformation
Digital technology offer faster services and a smoother customer experience

Hands-on experience to enhance customers experience through digitally-led services

By moving into ecosystems beyond their traditional core operations, banks are able to tap into their existing client base and operational capabilities, strengthen engagement, and capture data that will provide a more complete view of customers’ needs.

There is no doubt that digital initiatives could give a swift boost to banks’ bottom line. However, banks could be caught between a rock and a hard place since boosting customers experience is not always a walk in the park.

As the leading Vietnamese lender with digital embedded in its DNA, Techcombank is committed to developing innovative solutions revolving around the burgeoning needs and preferences of its customers. Techcombank has made unceasing efforts to continuously deliver best-in-class banking services with the aim of offering a friction-less, excellent digital experience to their customers.

The bank’s business excellence has been - realise by millions of customers, illustrated by its impressive number of clients.

banks put pedal to the metal in digital transformation
Techcombank has chosen "digital" as its core strategy

Guided by digital as its core strategy, Techcombank is committed to developing innovative solutions that are built around the needs and preferences of customers, making sure that products and services deliver secure, simple, seamless, and straightforward customer experiences.

Previously, the bank has poured almost $300 million into its digital infrastructure with the most up-to-date data. The bank initiated and implemented its “Zero Fee” programme from 2016, in which its clients no longer have had to pay any kinds of transfer fee for all online transactions.

This signature, one-of-a-kind policy has accelerated the bank’s performance and attractiveness over the last four years.

The bank’s massive investment is indeed well worth since Techcombank has successfully grabbed a bigger slice of the market. Digital technologies have a well-established fundamental role in the way Techcombank operates and strengthens its close-knit relations with customers.

Despite the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Techcombank has never ceased to amaze its customers with its top-notch, broad range of financial product offerings, which continuously lured more 330,000 net new customers to bring the total customers served by the bank to nearly eight million clients in the first half of 2020. The bank also maintains a firm growth rate of Current Account Savings Account (CASA), which grew by 29 per cent on-year to VND86 trillion ($3.74 billion ) by the end of June 30, 2020

In 2016, the number of e-banking transactions stemming from individual customers was about 9 million annually. By the end of June 2020, the number has increased to 153 million transactions, an approximately 20-fold increase while transaction value witnessed a 30-fold increase. This proves the bank’s sound infrastructure and modern operation on a digital platform to ensure the best customer experience via fast and smooth transaction processing.

At this year’s annual general shareholders’s Meeting, Ho Hung Anh, chairman of Techcombank, shared that in the next five years, Techcombank’s ambition was leading the digital transformation in the market, which would allow the bank to grow phenomenally.

“In the coming time, we will place a big bet on developing platforms, digitalising the whole of the bank and aiming at offering the best customer satisfaction,” Hung Anh said.

With this customer-centric approach, Techcombank believes in “quality first” as the bank understands that customers would value their experience via transaction speed and other benefits on top of security. Techcombank has gone to great lengths to bring tailor-made solutions to gain its customers’ trust, provide them exclusive privileges and make their life easier.

The bank’s transformation has been developed synchronously, ranging from its operation process and data to the provision of utility services from online payment transactions to savings and pre-approved loans, among others. All are integrated on its all-in-one internet banking platform.

By Minh Nhat

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