The mobile revolution might be in full swing but 87% of banking and finance leaders reported abandoning an app due to poor performance, according to survey sponsored by Austin, Texas-based Kony.
The survey, “The App Dilemma: Meeting the High Expectations of Business,” gauged the state of enterprise application investment and adoption among financial institutions with a particular focus on barriers to widespread adoption and the choice between in-house versus third party app development.
Conducted over a four-week period by Wakefield Research for Kony, the cloud-based enterprise application and mobility solutions company, also revealed 99% of financial institutions believe they would benefit from specific types of mobile apps; and 62% agreed their businesses could use specific types of apps including mobile banking apps.
The survey targeted 1,000 business executives at companies with 1,000-plus employees across industries – including 191 respondents in banking/finance. The majority of respondents were in the U.S., along with respondents from 17 other countries: Australia, Austria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden and UK.
Since the 2008 financial crisis, banks have closed more than 10,000 branches, according to the report. In the first half of 2017 alone, a net of 869 brick-and-mortar entities shut their doors, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence.
“Simultaneously, consumers have increasingly turned to mobile apps to streamline their day-to-day lives in areas from shopping and socializing to fundamental life management activities such as managing their financial accounts,” the survey stated. “The juxtaposition of these trends spotlights a unique challenge for banking and finance institutions – how to keep up with the pace and demand of customer expectations despite decreasing opportunities for face-to-face interactions while working to stay competitive and retain customers.”
Financial institutions know that mobile apps play a critical role in this new era of customer engagement. However, providing mobile apps in the financial sector must involve several rounds of due diligence to ensure apps meet the requirements expected of any financial institution.
Other key survey findings:
- More than 40% of those that managed mobile app development internally cited concerns over security vulnerabilities as a reason preventing their companies from developing mobile apps in-house, mirroring the fact that security is a top concern for banking customers.
- Of those banking and finance respondents whose companies developed apps in-house, many (62%) revealed their dissatisfaction with how the IT department managed the user experience of the mobile apps.
- Eighty-seven percent of banking and finance leaders reported abandoning an app due to poor performance (37%) and lack of user adoption (34%). They also recognized the need to refresh mobile apps to keep up with changing customer expectations.
- Respondents cited lack of app customization options (35%) as one of the challenges with using external app developers. Subsequently, 94% felt that third-party produced applications don’t meet their expectations.
Coinciding with release of the survey results, Kony announced plans to introduce a new next generation digital banking platform and a suite of applications.
“Banks and credit unions are committed to meeting the escalating expectations for a seamless, “customer-first” experience,” Thomas E. Hogan, chairman and CEO, Kony, Inc., said. “The new Kony Digital Banking Platform, combined with our growing portfolio of banking applications, and our strategic partnership with Diebold Nixdorf, will enable us to achieve our vision to facilitate banking anytime, anywhere, and through any channel – both physical and digital.”
The new suite of digital banking applications that Kony will release, starting in Spring of 2018, will include digital banking apps for retail banking, business banking, loans, new account onboarding, and digital wallet. In addition, Kony is launching its Digital Banking Marketplace that features an ecosystem of partner services and components to help speed the app development process.
“In the past, credit unions distinguished themselves by providing direct person-to-person interaction. Today, the challenge that we face is translating this traditional approach to a more digital interaction,” said John Janclaes, president and CEO, $1,6 billion Burbank, Calif.-based Partners Federal Credit Union. “Our cast members of The Walt Disney Company are increasingly expecting to do banking anywhere at any time.”