You might have heard the term ‘Fintech’ used to describe a company before, this has emerged over the past decade to describe new financial technology start-up companies that are offering innovative and alternative finance solutions to customers all over the world. Many of the Fintech’s first emerged after the global financial crisis of 2008 when the global banks were exposed. Some saw this as a fantastic opportunity to offer products and services to people who had lost trust in their local bank (and rightfully so), giving them more control and transparency than they had ever experienced.
Since 2008, the Fintech revolution has snowballed and we’re now seeing exciting developments in a range of services including P2P lending, global bank accounts, foreign exchange, global currency, payments and crowdfunding to name a few. In case you are still best friends with your bank, we’ve compiled a list of 5 reasons below to change your mind.
Banks are built on decades old systems and we’re not exaggerating here. In some of the biggest retail banks in your country, their architecture was initially built in the late 80’s and 90’s. After this initial period, technology rapidly advanced and is still sprinting even faster today. In response to this, banks have chosen the most cost effective option and added layers to their existing systems rather than ripping out the outdated stuff and starting fresh with the new tech. Essentially, this means the foundations of their offerings today are still ingrained with the system architecture of the previous century and the limitations this comes with.
With all of this in mind, they cannot keep up with the latest technological innovations and implement them anywhere near the same rate as Fintech’s. This translates to a slower and less convenient experience for customers.
Like the small independent businesses in your town, you’ll usually find you get a more personal service from these people because they care more about you and keeping you happy. Like them, Fintech’s are trying to build a customer base from scratch and want to tell the world about the unique service they are offering. It’s old school service with new school tech. Ultimately, an initial group of customers are not going to be excited about a company or recommend them to their friends if the service they received was anything short of spectacular.
How many times have you selected a bank to use because of an outstanding experience or heartfelt recommendation from a friend? We’re going to guess the reason behind your choice was more leaned towards a lack of other options available.
We move at lightning speed, meaning that if we receive feedback from our customers saying that they don’t like an aspect of our product or tell us a way we could improve their experience, we act on it! We don’t have a corporate chain of command to navigate through to get something done. Instead, top talent who traditionally thrive in banks are now flooding into the Fintech scene to work in a culture where people want to change the world in their industry, and they are succeeding. These are the people who help make the Fintech’s so adaptable by bringing their expertise and having the freedom to implement improvements rapidly.
A common working environment in tech and alternative finance start-ups is an open office, meaning developers, customer support, marketing, sales, data scientists and accountants alike all sit pretty much an arm’s length away from each other. There are no cubicles or fancy offices for individuals. This kind of environment is a breeding ground for sharing, improving and implementing ideas from all parts of the business and not just the product management team (as it is in banks) who rarely speak to an actual customer.
Generally, Fintech’s have a much smaller work force than banks. The bureaucracy in the corporate banking world results in a lot of internal positions being created to satisfy an external agenda and not to actually have any benefit on their customers. As a result, resources are spent in the wrong places that could have alternatively been spent on improving the customer experience and this bureaucracy leads to tasks (which do not have any backing of concrete data or research) to take priority over the things that are actually important.
We’re certainly not saying this applies to all Fintech’s or even to all banks, but it’s a generalisation we’re sure most can vouch for.