About a third of Americans in the working class population have less that $1,000 in their retirement savings. Dismal as it may be, this statistic only magnifies a less than impressive banking system that has been in existence for decades now, and this has resulted in subpar financial decisions when it comes to clients and banks themselves. There is an undeniable consumer friction that exists in today’s banks. This, coupled with clients’ minimal understanding on how to handle their finances, annoying authentication processes, and unclear plans and fees, has fueled poor financial plans and systems.
But, tables have turned. Clients are demanding much more from the financial services that they are using every day. This financial reawakening plus the surge in mobile apps has created an opening for user experience professionals and has made many consumers turn to FinTech as an effective mode of handling their finances.
FinTech, or financial technology, refers to savvy technological array, the puzzle of countless technologies in use of the financial industry that help clients within financial institutions. New technologies can be employed in just about every financial service that is warranted by most companies. However, there is an increased recruitment of user experience professionals in FinTech services, particularly for security, privacy, mobile wallet, mobile banking, and insurance. FinTech is helping small businesses grow and even compete at a global scale without having to spend tons of money on employees and other components to handle middle and back financial office services.
Why User Experience Is Important in the FinTech Sector
For a company or entity to claim that is has great user experience, it must essentially understand and meet the exact needs of the client without a fuss. Second, the entity or company has to provide services or products that are elegant, simple, and a joy to use.
As pointed out earlier, there is a consumer friction between banks and clients. There is very little transparency and presentation and delivery of financial information from the bank to the client. Thus, consumers are not always aware of their financial options or risks of not saving. User Experience for FinTech has helped bridge the gap between consumers and their finances. How?
UX experts have made sure that FinTech related projects encourage client online self-service, which improves efficiencies since clients get to the bottom-line of their financial need. This allows banking, insurance, and financial institutions to successfully balance their client’s financial goals with their own business drivers.
No more standing in long bank queues or going through an array of authentication processes in order to handle your finances. The FinTech industry has adopted UX best practices to allow consumers, entrepreneurs and companies to handle and keep track of the financial transactions from anywhere and at anytime. Users can access bank accounts or statements from a computer or smartphone at whatever time that suits their schedule.
With FinTech, banking is done online, which means that transactions are processed almost immediately. For instance, users can use a debit card to make payments instead of checks, and this transaction appears instantly on your account.
As it is the case with most business, they have multiple bank accounts including savings, personal, and company accounts. FinTech savvy technologies make it much easier and quicker to transfer funds from one account to the other. This translates to meeting payment deadlines and effective management of cash flow.
Want to Succeed in the Fintech Sector? Get Emotional.
Today, more than ever, financial institutions are dependent on technology. Without a strong technology orientation, these institutions will not survive. Top-notch tech practices and streamlined user experience methodologies must be adopted in order to remain in the competition and survive.
Money is an emotional thing. It is emotional to all consumers and more so to those working in the finance industry. Therefore, we may well be seeing more fintech companies focusing on developing features and technologies that touch on the emotions of their users. Wether it is banks, forex companies, or any other financial institution – in order to succeed in the fintech sector, get emotional.
1. Colleen Roller, “Designing Effective Experiences for Financial Services,” UX Magazine, April 16, 2014, http://uxmag.com/articles/designing-effective-experiences-for-financial-services.
2. Akendi. “Akendi Financial Banking.” http://www.akendi.ca/industry/financial-banking/.
3. Karl Antle, “The New Definition of FinTech,” Alley Watch, October 9, 2013, http://www.alleywatch.com/2013/10/the-new-definition-of-fintech/.
4. “FinTech: A New Definition,” Grovelands, June 26, 2014, http://www.grovelands.co.uk/fintech/.