Advice on Personal Finances – it sounds both a bit complicated and boring. But does this really need to be the case nowadays?
The past few years have seen rapid developments in how we can go about our banking business, not least in terms of the slightly more complex side of things. The number of customers that choose to physically visit a branch has decreased sharply. Many of my acquaintances don’t even remember when they last set foot in a bank.
This has led to Nordea making the decision to invest in what we call Online Advice. We want to be there when important things happen in the lives of our customers, which means we have to change our availability and make it simple to meet the bank.
An online meeting with Nordea takes place on the phone and with a shared screen. This means you can be anywhere, as long as you have an internet connection, a computer and a phone.
What strikes me, and what is evidenced all the time, is how simple this is and how it makes daily life much easier. Because, a while ago, advice in personal finances required quite a lot of planning, in any case if the customer had a family and there were several people in the household. Finances are a part of daily life, and people often want to make decisions jointly. This could entail several hours of preparation including organising childcare, taking time off work, getting to the bank, parking the car, etc.
Today, one person can be at work and another at home, and both can connect to the same meeting.
Just yesterday, I heard a guy who had just had a review of the family’s pension situation, exclaim: “Wow! This is great, and so simple!”
This is exactly what we are noticing – that these services facilitate daily life. The number of online meetings is steadily on the rise among our customers. Today 30% of all of our customer meetings actually take place online – a figure that we know will keep increasing.
Our strategy and ambition are simple in this respect – we want to be where our customers are. And sometimes, you don’t even need to get up off your chair to meet the bank.
/ Petra Eklund, Head of the Online Branch at Nordea in Sweden.