Magazine article American Banker

The Nonbank Apps Digital Bankers Love

Magazine article American Banker

The Nonbank Apps Digital Bankers Love

Article excerpt

Byline: Robert Barba

AUSTIN, Texas -- They've been honored for their work in building out their banks' digital offerings, but where do Michelle Moore of Bank of America, Andy Hernandez of Regions Bank and Jamie Armistead of Bank of the West look for inspiration?

"Definitely not financial services," Armistead, executive vice president of digital channels for San Francisco-based Bank of the West, said at American Banker's Digital Banking Summit.

During a panel discussion about how banks can transform their digital offerings from transaction tools to services that their customers love, the three bankers were asked which companies or products they admire. Their picks shed some light on how the digital leaders approach their work.

Armistead, who was a 2015 Digital Banker of the Year finalist, pointed to Instagram, Uber and Google for their devotion to constant improvements instead of frequently chasing the next big thing. He noted that Google, despite all of its various projects, still has a team dedicated to constantly improving its search engine.

That is not how many banks approach innovation. However, banks such as USAA, often considered to be at the cutting edge of innovation, have begun moving in that direction. For instance, USAA has teams devoted to discrete functions like depositing checks and has tasked them with constantly looking for ways to improve those functions.

Hernandez, who heads e-business for Regions and was a 2017 Digital Banker of the Year finalist, said he is "addicted" to Waze, a traffic app that picks the fastest route based on real-time input from other drivers. …

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