Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Secure E-Communications Are Top-Line Issue for Banks: Competitive Advantages Extend Well beyond Compliance

Academic journal article ABA Banking Journal

Secure E-Communications Are Top-Line Issue for Banks: Competitive Advantages Extend Well beyond Compliance

Article excerpt

Banks that move quickly and aggressively to implement secure messaging--particularly secure messaging--secure email, live chat and instant messaging--are gaining a powerful competitive advantage over those that don't. Not only do they comply with regulatory requirements, they find additional sources of customer satisfaction, decrease customer churn and increase revenues and profits.

CUSTOMER SERVICE

In the area of customer service, the competitive advantage is clear: secure messaging enables a bank to communicate time-sensitive information instantaneously, provides a simple response mechanism and, most important of all, presents information actively--like a telephone call--rather than passively--like a web site.

Exception item processing is a typical time-sensitive process where secure e-mail vastly improves customer service. Rather than communicate non-sufficient funds information through a print-and-mail system, which notifies customers well after the fact, secure e-mail can alert customers in time to react. And, the secure notification can present options that can be acted upon via the e-mail notification itself.

MARKETING

An e-mail message is much more effective than an announcement on a web site-even when that web site is your customer's destination for online banking. First, e-mail is more likely to be read. Provided that customers have opted in-formally agreed that they wish to receive e-mail notifications of special offers, promotions--they are unlikely to ignore a message from their bank.

Second, secure e-mail is active rather than passive. The marketing department can push messages out into the customer base, rather than post them on the web site and hope for the best. It also provides flexibility for handling customer response, since it can direct the customer to specific web pages, of even allow them to handle the entire transaction securely within the e-mail.

LENDING

Secure e-mail can improve efficiency with no procedural changes, no special training, and no disruption to the existing IT infrastructure. Underwriting loans is an extremely detail-oriented process that always requires numerous communications for clarification, obtaining information and moving the process to completion. …

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