Emory Mayfield, Chief Consumer Banking Officer, Hancock Whitney
MX, Emprise Bank, BECU
Thanks for the applause, Randy. Appreciate it.
It was for Casey.
That's fair. He deserves it. Um, so very excited about this conversation. Got some pretty outstanding professionals here on stage and instead of doing the regular introductions of their roles, I'm gonna ask each of them the favorite part of their job. Damien, you're next.
Why do I have to go first?
Because you're right here.
Um, so I am a classified nerd. Uh, I'm an engineering by trade, but banker. Um, so I think for me, I really love exploring data and uncovering problems through data. I think being in the digital organization that comes in a couple of different examples. So one, um, the ability to, to use things like, you know, the data we see through aggregation to identify customer needs, customer problems, things we can actually solve I think it's nice being in a part of the organization where you can see the tangible outcome of things that you're doing to benefit an end user. Right? So I really like that part of my job.
Yeah, that's great, Jana.
So I like to ask why so incessantly that like a four year old, ultimately they're going to wind up trying to do what I'm asking to just to probably get me to shut up.
Um, but no, I really do love challenging the status quo, and especially in an industry where we haven't always been as innovative as we should and we haven't used the tools that we have. Data is a prime example. And really taking a new look and a fresh look at how we can do that and do it differently. And I love seeing the excitement in the faces of people when we really get to make a difference that way.
That's awesome. Alright, Casey, bring us home.
Yeah, I apologize to anybody who's in banking that's not in product. I always say, you know, whenever you wanna come to product and be in the middle of everything, we'd love to have you. So that's what I love is, uh, you get to work with, frontline staff, uh, finance teams, uh, it and technical partners and a lot of great partners on the outside too that you get to bring in too. So it's a beautiful, uh, hub in the middle of a lot of spokes.
That's great. So I think a lot of us, most of us in this room, have been in technology for a very long time, and it's always amazing how quickly people adapt, ourselves included, right? There's some new amazing breakthrough and then it's just a given and then the next one and the next one And that is especially challenging in financial services in terms of you know, what people are now used to having ChatGPT write their college essays, for example. So how do we think about that from a banking customer perspective of just sort of meeting the needs today and tomorrow when their expectations change so quickly? And I'm gonna start with you Casey.
You know, I think you really have to ground technologies like that in customer outcomes. Mm-hmm. Um, ChatGPT is really fun to play around with, and we saw some of the images that AI can create earlier in the conference today. But at the end of the day, you just have to ask what's the customer trying to do? And sometimes that can really be misaligned with technology or with what the bank thinks that they want to do or we're, we're prepared to sell them. So I think you have to really ground it in at the end of the day, what's the outcome you're driving towards? How can I help you get there?
No, I totally agree with that.
And I think the really interesting thing too is we talk about technologies and we can just get so engrossed and how big that is, right? It's a huge thing. And we often overlook the fact that there's so many small things that we can do to serve our members, uh, as a credit union and what they need. And I think the big kicker with what you said is being where they need you. And they don't always need you there in their face with the next bright and shiny object. They may need you just to help them make a deposit. They may need to help them. How do I get my statement easier?
Those things are not super sexy things I think that a lot of people like to think about. But if you can make those things easier, then you really have served them and provided a benefit to them that they're now gonna come back for more. And you still keep the big shiny objects on the list, but never overlook the fact that little things can be very helpful in a consumer's life.
That's great. Damien?
Yeah, I think I would just add to that, we often forget that as employees of the bank we're also customers, right? And so we, we often lose sight of people go on this journey, and they have a lot of questions. They have a lot of anxiety around their financial decisions and, and how those sort of cut across their different, uh, meaningful moments in their life. And I think the bank can do a much better job. And we're starting to move in this direction as an industry and sort of leaning in,
Understanding customer needs in a deeper way and bringing real solutions to those needs that cut across people's entire financial life. And I think if we do that really well, that's how we're gonna sort of transform the role that the bank plays and ultimately create lifetime value for our end consumer.
Yeah, I mean, in terms of the role the bank plays, we are still at a stage where differentiation is on, you know, it's on interest rates, it's on brand, it's on product. We're nowhere close to being able to differentiate on outcomes. Are you better off banking here versus here from a discernible difference, lower cost of borrowing, you know, better tools to help you save. Like, am I financially better off banking here or here?
So how are you thinking about that from an outcome perspective? Like how does that kind of guide how you work? I'm gonna start with Jana this time.
So I'm actually gonna steal some ideas from you guys.
MX I think that one of the things we have to really focus on is being brilliant at the basics. I mean, one of the things that as an industry we have lacked right? Is we're always focusing on what is the next sale. I think what I really love, especially about the credit union space is there is a very needs-based focus, but it's how do you do it differently? And historically, I think you've all seen it, you've all been a participant in it, right? Is what do you do every spring? You run a home equity line campaign? Anybody in here not run a home equity line campaign in the spring?
I'm just gonna ask, I wanna talk to you afterwards. Um, you know, you have these seasonality things because you're running balance sheet plays, right? You have to have a healthy balance sheet. But if you were to look at it a little bit differently, and if you could find out ways to be in the micro moments of a consumer's life, and that is the basics. What are the things they need to do to, to run their daily lives? And you can build those through the data, the automation, the triggers, and you're there when they need you, then that large plays, marketing plays, you have to run. They might become a little less because the sense is they're there when I need you.
So I think that's the real kicker that we've got to get to is how do you become absolutely brilliant at the basics? Because some of our neo competitors I will say that, um, have actually sat on stage and said we don't actually offer anything different. We just market it and talk to the consumer differently than you do. That was quite a challenge when I had to sit and hear that from a competitor.
So, I mean we often reflect on sort of the most individualized experience you have is typically how you have that conversation with a banker or an advisor, right? Like they're really getting to know who you are, who's in your family, what your needs are. And I think we've struggled to bring that to life through digital, and I think that's where the magic is gonna happen. Like if we can replicate that, that human experience within the digital channel, but also make sure it's seamlessly connected.
And so both sides of that interaction understand what's going on with that individual. I think you're seeing sort of the maturity move from like experience for the masses, then we went through the personalization phase and now we're getting into the individualization phase of what's possible.
And that's what drives outcomes for sure. And I think we can challenge, you know, our ability to differentiate a bit on the product side. Um, you know, I always kind of joked with my team that when a consumer comes into a branch new relationship to the bank, um, take off your, your wealth customer or somebody looking for a mortgage, just someone who's just after everyday management of their household finances in their head they're thinking of six or seven outcomes, right?
I wanna pay my bills on time, I want to set aside some savings. I don't want to overdraw or have any other penalty fees. I want to communicate adequately with everybody in my household, so on and so forth. And so we've trained them to ask for the commodity that they would ask in any bank branch, anywhere. I need to open a checking account. So it's almost like our, we inadvertently play to the commodity people where we're not we can't differentiate and where we probably should the product we should be selling is household financial management.
And by the way, that comes with a checking account or a savings account or a money market or whatever you need. And all of the other ancillary, you know, ways that we can um, give them payment vehicles as well.
Yeah. I think the other part of differentiation is, and I think in the tee-up notes, there was a comment around like, patience. And there's a lot of opportunity just to help save customers' time. And that to me is an experience differentiator. Like people are busy. you know, particularly families, right? Um, how do we help sort of automate the experience and put things onto to autopilot where possible, or give some degree of control to people to where people can opt into that.
And I think that goes along with the experience and the product to say like, you know, we can automate these steps for you, no problem. Um, we can create, you know, optimized cash flow output for you if that's your desire. So I think there is a, a big benefit around saving people time.
So how do you think, I mean, it's a great segue into just the idea of a seamless experience. People experience you through your app, through online, through your branches, like they experience you in multiple ways, call centers. How do you think about making that more seamless? So it doesn't matter what channel they're coming in, they're getting the right experience they need at the time.
You looking at me?
Okay, this is actually an area where I think that many in the industry, including ourselves, actually need to focus on. And one of the things that Suncoast is focusing on is how do you look at channel deflection is what we call it. So people come into one channel, they actually have to get into another channel to complete that, you know, what happened, what caused the movement?
And then we're taking a look at those and finding those pain points and saying, how do we solve for that? And that's not always technology. There's processes involved that you have to take a look at. And that's a big thing that I think that every financial institution could take a look at because we're layered with years of processes that have built up that may or may not need to be happening in the way they happened before.
And so that's something that I think is gonna be a major play in the way that we can serve, um, the members serve consumers in a different way and make it more seamless, but it's gonna take some work.
That's great, Casey.
Yeah. And there will always be seams. Um, you just need to make sure that the cracks are as small as possible and that you can paper over them so that no one even notices. Right. I think, uh, our journey at Umpqua, uh, you know, we also had a large merger this past year. If we go back two years, we had a separate mobile app for mobile banking, for debit card controls for our banker assisted chat and for our credit card experience.
Makes my stomach hurt just thinking about it. Um, all of that is unified now into the consumer online experience, which, you know, thank goodness, because now it's all, it looks very seamless, even though we're still talking to the same outside partners to make all that happen. But what that allows then is for, you know, in terms of the channel differentiation is for those support teams then to be able to see one view of what the client's seeing. So when they co-browse, they don't have to worry about co-browsing over four different apps. It's one app. They can see what the client sees. It's super important.
My turn. Yeah, I think there's, there's a big opportunity, and this is gonna sound very cliche, but sort of the 360 view of the customer, but like, have you actually defined a single repository where everybody's contributing to build out the customer profile and it's fed back into all the channels in a very seamless and consistent way. Um, I think most banks aspire to that. Um, some are doing a great job, some are not doing such a good job. But I think that is a core sort of basic thing.
And then from a platform reusability perspective, are you thinking about, you know, why do I still need a banker servicing desktop that's separate from online banking that's separate from a call center desktop? Like, why does that still exist? And part of that is just, you know, you've grown through consolidation of banks, or you've been sold new technology solutions in different parts of the organization. So I think the, the platform consistency and reusability, if you get that right, it actually gives you a major advantage because you're only building things one time and then deploying across.
Yeah. It's always one of the most fascinating things when you get to peak behind the curtain, you're like, wait, what do your call center people see when they, when people call, it's like, man, it looks like 1992 screens. So yeah. There's always a lift to be done.
In terms of seamlessness, Jana, Um, I think we'll go back to on the seamless side, it is something you have to continue to look at. It's, it's something that's never going to your point, there's always gonna be seams, right? And even when you close the seams, another seam is gonna open somewhere. So it's a constant look at that and having that constant, um, visualization. And I love that you said why it's my favorite question to ask. Um, and I think that you have to continually do that.
Yeah. And you have to continue to look at those things and continue to ask why.
Yeah. Uh, and, and make sure that there is a reason behind the scenes. Sometimes there are. And those are just things we have to work on. And again, making sure that they're just the smallest seam they can be.
I love it. So switching gears a little, um, again, there's always going to be next generation technology. Right now it's AI it's like every year is the year of something this year, year of AI.
How is that impacting how you think about hiring and how you're structuring teams? Casey?
I would say it's just starting to, um, so having a conversation, you know, an internal conversation with senior leaders at a commercial bank that's focused on commercial and business customers some, and you know, the relationship value that, that a human touch brings, right? Right. Banker with the right client. Um, sometimes you get some glassy stairs when you start talking about AI and you know, well, what are we replacing? Because it's the relationship. It's the relationship why they're here.
Yeah. Um, but that said, um, we are starting to go down a path, internally where yes, we do have after hours virtual assistant available to our customers, but internally we also have a virtual assistant available to our bankers to help navigate some internal, um, bureaucracy in forms and procedure as well. So it's getting people kind of used to dealing with a bot, if you will. I hate that term, virtual assistant is what we call it. Um, but I think that really, really helps. And I think for us in the future, there's a really big opportunity there to maybe bring AI farther into the bank to help bankers, right.
If our strategy is really gonna be human focused, relationship focused, one of the biggest pain points you can give a client is when a banker makes a mistake. Right? Or something pinballs around an organization because no one knew where to take it, right? Can we leverage AI to help us, you know, navigate or have bankers navigate, you know, internal processes? Here's the right thing to say, here's what, here's the department you talked to when this happens to kind of navigate you know, standard operating procedures that might be hard to navigate otherwise.
I love that, John.
Yeah. I think we are, we're doing the same. We're kind of just starting to take a look at it. We have the internal assistance and we've actually had that for a little while, but I think now what we're doing is saying, well, how can we use this new, this newer shiny, uh, object, if you will, to then educate and revamp some of the things that we've been doing on an internal basis? And then making sure that those outcomes that we see that are coming out of, um ChatGPT or others are some of the things we've expected.
So I think the, the initial focus really is how can you look at it from an operational perspective and, and that may impact the outcomes of other things, such as how do you decision loans, how does that look like when you're decisioning loans? Does that change any of the things that you're doing when you're doing it that way?
More so right now than that forward facing we're gonna have a large language model just spit out something that a consumer's gonna see. I don't know that everybody's ready to look at that just yet. Um, but yeah, taking a look and then sticking your toe in the water, I guess a little bit and seeing how it's gonna change things, Damien.
Yeah, I mean, I think it does start with a little bit of a pragmatic view of like, what are the use cases we're going after? Um, so, you know, one of the things is how do we improve operational efficiency call deflection. So even understanding like reason for call. And then you're seeing a pattern where somebody's calling, you know, when their income comes in just to confirm that it's hit their account. There's absolutely no reason why you can't be predicting that's gonna happen and serving things up. So I think there are some pretty pragmatic use cases that you can start with to sort of test your way into some of the new technology. Um, but I think, you know, AI and the data that powers AI does have the ability to sort of transform, um, the overall experiences, both digital and human.
I mean, what Omar was talking about this morning around there is genuine, that sort of human concern, will this replace my job? And especially repeatable jobs and especially things that take, you know, I say this with love as an ex registered investment advisor, I guarantee a machine can do it better than most investment advisors. Right. If you can get the large data sets in, what's the right thing for you? Are you hearing or seeing nervousness around your institutions around where, tech may go? And especially as technology people, I imagine this is where some of it would be directed.
Yes. Yeah. I, I think, you know, and this is probably true of most banks, like we had that conversation where bankers are worried about the role of digital, right? Replacing their jobs. Mm-hmm. 'cause everyone was going DIY, but that's why it became a deliberate strategy around it's digital plus human.
You're an important part of the equation. Um, it's not just a DIY strategy, it's a DIY and DIT strategy. Because even if you think about, you know, I've got young kids, they've got smartphones in their hands all day, they're missing out on the human to human connection.
I think that's still alive and well. Um, but I think empowering those bankers, those advisors with the insights that come from technologies like AI just makes them better at their job.
Yeah. And it draws them closer to the connection that they can have with that, with that consumer. Are you seeing that at Suncoast?
Yeah. I think that you're always gonna see that when you have new, technologies that come out. I echo that. I remember when mobile deposit came out, we're not, we're never gonna need tellers. All the tellers are going away. Right? Um, and that just doesn't happen. It's almost like it just continually evolves and you always find the human piece being brought back into it. And we've seen that in, um, in the retail space as well, uh, with rethinking how they do, how they use their physical, um, branches.
I, uh, had the Riff on a Lift chat about Starbucks. I mean, they just started thinking about how can I improve the efficiency of my coffee shops?
By allowing them to order online and pick it up.
How do you look at those type things?
So it's really how do you just evolve and what is the experience of those physically in person type of interactions? What does that change to?
And it just evolves it over time. But it does always make people nervous. And it may very well mean that we need less of a certain role because some of those things are being filled by AI.
But at the same time, uh, you know, the message that we always share, and I'm sure you both do too, is the goal here is to free you up for more valuable work. Um, answering questions that a chat bot could answer is not a great use of your time and probably not the reason you come to work and the reason you feel good when you go home from work. No. It's the interaction you have with the client where you're actually, you, you're moving them towards their desired outcome.
Let's free them up to do that and, and let, uh, let AI do the rest.
Great. So we're gonna do a couple of deep dive questions, but I do wanna give everyone the heads up that in about 10 minutes or so we're gonna open up for a question. So think through what you'd like to ask this brilliant panel here. Um, so in the meanwhile, switching gears to lessons learned. So over the years, obviously you try and succeed and you try and fail, um, especially around things like consumer engagement. So what are some of the lessons learned that you've picked up along the way? Things that have worked, either worked well or haven't worked in terms of adoption?
So I'll add one. And it's really been, some of the interactions that I've had that will just say maybe not have gone so aligned me very much with many of the other departments within the organization. And so what that has given me a little bit of a broader perspective on is when we do plan on rolling things out, that it is going to change something. If you move the cheese for a consumer in any way, shape, form, or fashion, good, bad, or indifferent, uh, you're going to have some people that don't like it.
And so how do you make sure that you're planning for an effective strategy and rolling that out so that the supporting departments can make sure that they're there for those people without kind of blowing anything up. Um, those are one of the biggest lessons I've learned. So whenever we go into those engagement, I am avid on bringing in all of the departments that are going to be impacted and making sure that we're either staffed for the volumes we may be able to expect, uh, questions that may come in, or that we've staggered the strategy to roll it out so that they can handle the volumes as they come in.
So what's an example of cheese moving? Like a button moving on a website?
Um, honestly it could be anything. Uh, but it comes into those major things that consumers do on a daily basis. I'll give you one prime example. If you change a button on bill pay, yes, they're gonna call. And if you just, you could move it from here to there, change it from green to orange and somebody's gonna call. So you just have to be mindful of it and make sure you're prepared for it.
I love it, Damien.
Yeah, I, I echo that. Um, we've, we've had some challenges I think with, uh, with our online banking experience over the last couple of years. Just changing navigation or changing the bill pay flow. Um, being careful about becoming enamored with the design, but you lose the functionality, right? Like the design doesn't matter if it's not functional, if it's not easy, right? So having an eye towards like function first then make it pretty, right?
And so you have to stay true to that. Um, and I think then also just making sure you're sort of ruthlessly testing with different customer groups, single product customers, multi-product customers, different affluence levels, getting the bankers involved and actually testing so they understand what's rolling out when it's rolling out. All those are great things to focus on.
I'll try to coalesce a few things into one kind of theme. I think one of the biggest things I've learned, learned just over the past five years, is avoid a bolt-on mentality at all costs. Um, someone will have a, a pet project, a pet vendor or a third party partner or a, a function that they want to add. And hey, it doesn't cost that much money. We could do it quickly. Um, as soon as you bolt that on, you realize nobody asked for that. Nobody wanted it, nobody's using it. It's costing you money. And as soon as you bolt it on, you should just plan a few years later to unbolt it because that's what will happen.
So anything that you do needs to have a great customer reason for doing it. And it needs to have a group to give it care and feeding. 'cause it's, you can't just bolt it on and expect that it's, it's just gonna keep working and it's gonna be it's gonna keep doing what it's supposed to do when you bolted it.
I'd love to add to that. That's one of my favorites. Um, but it's another kind of, um, I guess offshoot of the industry as a whole. I think for a long time we've been, if we build it, they will come.
So to your point of making sure if you're putting it in there that you have someone to care and feed for it because the industry and the market is no longer, if you build it, they will come.
Mm-hmm. It is.
You have to build it and you have to proactively help them and manage through it. So bolting on is, to me, it has to be a thing of the past and it has to be a very, very holistic approach and look to what you're doing so that you're intentional and purposeful about what you're bringing to market and to the consumer. We need welds, not bolts.
It's welded on 'cause it deserves to be there.
I thought you said Wells. Yeah.
Oh, I think, you know, just one more add to that. I think also being conscious of how much are you spending on the build relative to how much you're spending on driving awareness of that thing, right? Sometimes those things get out of balance, so you end up with 400 features that nobody knows about, which is pretty useless. So how do you strike the right balance between, this is my investment in building the technology aligned to customer need, but then also we're driving a tremendous amount of awareness so we get the usage.
So that's a perfect segue into the chicken and egg conversation. You ready? Which comes first? Product strategy or digital strategy?
We're going into planning right now. I have a great, probably, you know, maybe no one likes this answer, but I think the answer is neither shouldn't it be a customer strategy? And then product and experience hang off of that. So if you 'cause both of the, the panelists shared, like it starts with understanding your customer's needs and then you bring solutions that you're a combination of product experience and sort of rewards.
You can't be enamored with a digital solution because that digital front end may have a very non-digital solution on the back end fulfilling it. I, my mind immediately goes to, uh, what's Fred Meyer in the northwest? I think it's Kroger, everywhere else. Uh, you could order your groceries online. My wife, this is recorded, right? I love my wife. She works so hard to take care of our family.
We'll make sure we clip that and send it to her.
Yes. Uh, let the minutes show. The front end interface to order your groceries is beautiful. It works really well. And then you have to drive to the store park, and then they bring the groceries out loaded in your car. It should work great. But when she gets a bruised green pepper or milk that's two days from expiring, that whole product doesn't work. It doesn't matter what the digital solution was. So many banking things are like that too, where, uh, if the backend fulfillment is not working well, it doesn't really matter what your digital strategy was. And I would actually, um, start where I think you said customers first, right?
But I will say this. Um, it's all about how you think about digital. And if you think about digital as a product, for sure, you don't do that. Digital to me is an experience and it goes far beyond just the actual technology to do it.
And so to me, you start with the need, right? But you have to have a product to deliver through the digital service. So I would tend to lean that you gotta have the product, um, and you gotta have at least brilliant basic ones to be able to deliver through the channels. But, um, it is a chicken and the egg. And the issue I think we've got right now is we have both products and we have digital. And then how, which one do you enhance?
Yeah. First maybe where everyone is at the moment. Mm-hmm. It's good answering the question with a question. I like it. Yeah.
I mean it's, it's fascinating in that the brand is the experience now too. You can tell people who you are or you like, but unless you don't show it with a great experience, seamless or little seem experience, um, it's you know all of those brand dollars go to waste because you're not following through on fulfillment. Okay. I know y'all have been thinking about your questions.
We are gonna open it up and, uh, oh, way down the back there. We've gotta I'm coming. We've only got one runner, Sachi
I thought the quote that you said about being brilliant at the basics as a differentiator is a great idea. I think when you sit down,
I did steal it from MX, so I'm just saying
Oh. Um, I think when you sit down and try to simplify a journey there's always, you know, 20 great ideas and then there's probably 20 ideas that you don't know. How do you figure out, you know, what you do when you don't know, and how do you figure out where to focus? Because I think there's a lot of ways you can be brilliant at the basics.
So I'll answer that very quickly. One of the things that you do is you have someone paint your wall with, dry erase so that you can at any time get up and draw any experience you want. I'm just gonna say. Um, but the other part is, is I think you have to work collaboratively with all of the departments and areas that are impacted and that have to be impacted to fulfill that. Because there are things that you don't know. So, you know, if a product's opened online, a checking account is opened online and then it goes to the core, what happens after that? Is there someone that touches it?
Then is there something that has to happen? What are those things? And I think it's understanding all of the different areas that are impacted by whatever it is that you're delivering, and making sure that they're being brought to the table so they can give you what are all the touch points? What are all the pain points, what are all the process points that we need to be looking at?
And we're never gonna be perfect at that, but I think that you just have to give it a start. And I think you would be surprised if you think about some of the most basic things you think about that a financial services company does. And then you look at one simple, what you think is simple right? Product or process. And you're like why are there 17 steps in here and why are there three humans approving something? And we, we don't need but one. Um, so I think, I don't know if that answers the question, but I think it's bringing all the areas in and just making sure you're open to hearing what happens beyond the single point of posting something to the core systems.
Yeah, I mean, I'll, I'll pile on and give a couple more examples. I mean what Wes talked about this morning in terms of like ensuring the technology foundation is really, really good. Basic things like how fast are the pages responding in the mobile app or online banking. Those are actually the top drivers of customer satisfaction. Like, if it's not, um, performant, then I'm not gonna use it. So getting back to the basics, in terms of simplified navigation, is it really easy to log in, um, do the pages load fast? Those are the things that, you know, we're paying a lot of attention to 'cause they're the primary drivers of customer dissatisfaction if you get them wrong.
Yeah, I would add client advisory boards. User groups are great ways to put proof of concepts in front of actual clients, make sure you're not too far down a solutions path. I everybody loves the phrase, you know, fall in love with the problem, not the solution. Don't be, you know, too overly invested in one particular thing, uh, with, to make you not want to, to jump tracks if something's better.
Hmm. All right. More questions.
Oh, um, how do you handle a like in, in the product development space when you're trying to balance, let's say a set of commercial customers that require a lot of customization and, you know, bespoke solutions, which can be very draining as opposed to focusing on product that you wanna deliver at scale. Like what's the right way to think about that balance?
Depends. Um, I think it has to be an, and, I think you gotta be very clear on if you're gonna invest in customization bespoke, like is it worth it? Meaning who are we trying to acquire? Who do we want to differentiate with? Who are we trying to serve with sort of mass market things. Um, so I think if you can get clear on that, um, I think that helps answer the question. Um, but also can you build the technology in such a way that it actually solves both of those problems so it scales properly from mass to customization and back down or fake it. Um, you know, some things are just out of the box, you know, customizations where you can build different audiences and, and themes for different things or, uh, you know, overlays, communication overlays that you can apply to certain client sets as well so that it, it, from the client's point of view, it can feel very bespoke.
But particularly from the consumer standpoint, which is the sandbox that I play in, it's, it's very difficult to do that, uh, something bespoke because, you know, you've got compliance concerns, you've got scalability concerns. So, uh, to the extent that you can use what's available to you, that's what we do at Umpqua.
And I will say both of them are correct. Um, and the only thing I would add to you is that I think you always have to look at each experience that you're dealing with and realize that the fact that a human might be needed at a certain point in an interaction is okay. It depends on the segment you're dealing with.
When you're dealing with something that requires such level of specialization and personalization, then there may be a point in that digital experience that it has to move over to a human. And you just have to have the business case that makes that worthwhile. Some cases, when you're dealing with commercial, it may make, it may make good sense to have, uh, a little bit of a intentional channel deflection in certain experiences that they're asking for that level of customization.
Hello. Um, I'm gonna switch gears a bit with this question if, if that's okay. Um, so next year, um, so I lead our, our, um, marketing programs and brand team. And next year we're integrating MX into our digital banking. We're designing a new public facing website. We're onboarding a new agency. Um, so my question is, with all that happening, what advice can you give me to help me enable and help my team, be successful with managing multiple digital projects at once?
So I'll take that one since I have all those same things going on right now too. Um, we are actually in the process of rebuilding our website. We are rebuilding online and mobile banking and, we just launched a new marketing automation platform. So I would tell you, it's just making sure that you stay connected because one of the things you wanna do, and you've got that many digital things happening, is not to just wind up to, I'll steal your phrase, bolted on. You have four different new things bolted on. How are we making sure that all of the project teams are connected so that they know how they can impact one another so that the end of the day what you are delivered is something that can see all of the different systems and be able then to deliver the marketing that you want And I'm very happy to chat with you offline about that if you want.
Yes, please. Thank you.
Yeah, I, I'd also say like, if you can get clear on the outcome versus getting enamored with the work or the initiative and you bring all those teams under the umbrella of your mission is this outcome, it really helps drive sort of a cohesive execution versus sort of, there's 50 different initiatives that are spread out, but nobody's sure why we're doing them. So sort of outcome-based organization of, of different teams that have a common mission.
That's great. Yeah, I think your question is more about throughput and, and bandwidth, but I I would also just say, realize what a great opportunity you have right now. All of those things at the same time is that, that doesn't happen very often. I wish I could go through our website and replace all the copy with all the things that probably should be there if I had the time to do it. And we could talk more about customer outcomes versus, you know, feature sets. So don't squander what you have and appreciate it as well. I also love that you're crowdsourcing advice. So please, anyone else who has a point of view, feel free to weigh in, ask for advice.
Yeah. Please. This is what we are here for. Any other questions?
We've got one up front here.
Hi. Um, question. Um, I'm curious, in all of your opinions, it seems that customer expectations continue to evolve and how not only the experiences they have on digital, but also traditional channels as well, and that's driven largely by the experiences that they have with a lot of things outside financial services. So I'm curious in how you guys think about using and leveraging digital to orchestrate and connect experiences across channels in your institutions.
Yeah, I mean, I mentioned one of the ways we're doing it, which is like literally building a common platform that everybody uses, right? So there's no mystery in terms of who this customer is, what their needs are, what they care about. Like everybody has the same view So I think there is sort of a, a platform, uh, component to that. Um, I think it's also interesting to take a look at some of the open banking data, right?
Like we see a lot of our customers relying on third party apps to get their needs met. And it's very interesting when you start looking at that data and you create sort of, uh, affinity groups or profiles, 'cause you can connect that into conversations that are happening with a branch banker about this person's, um, seeking out debt advice or, you know, they are planning a family and they have a need for household spending analysis or whatever, right? So I think the visibility into what's going on is of paramount importance and then looking at some of the data to, to really uncover, you know, who this customer is and, and what they fundamentally care about.
I would agree. And I think that the other part of that is not just in delivering it to the branches that can, can talk to them or the call centers or care centers that can talk when they call in, but using that data to be able to be, um, proactive in certain things we see, we can see that they are using another app for a particular service and a lot of times they may not even know that you offer the same thing.
And so even bringing awareness at the time, the, the, the interesting thing to me is finding the, um, the performance of that type of marketing. And I even hesitate to call it marketing. I think it's more of a conversation, but, when you have that happen and someone is trying to do something and you tell them something in the moment you have such a better conversion rate and reaction rate then you do if you just, you know, periodically tell you that we have this service.
So I think it's, it's that being there in the moment and trigger-based information that you're providing to members, um, across the channels and proactivity, uh, is that a word? Proactivity? Mm-hmm. Okay. There.
There you go.
It's now I, I think just generally, uh, this won't speak necessarily to the part of your question about kind of cross channel expectations, but I think financial institutions should and, and will dip into, uh, the for telling the future for clients a little bit more. Um, I was excited to see some of the news from MX today on, on kind of a revised cash flow, uh, engine and the ability to do that. But I think, you know, every financial institution in this room is flawless at showing a customer the present and the past.
And we can give you your transactions, uh, cleansed and categorized in 120 different, uh, you know, ways and pretty bubbles that show you, you know, where you've spent and, and where you've overspent and where you didn't, you know, keep your budget, but being able to tell somebody, Hey, three weeks from now your, your mortgage is gonna come out automatically two days before your paycheck and you're probably gonna be in an overdraft status, right? That's the kind of stuff that I think consumers are probably going to start expecting. And, I think maybe AI and other solutions can start to deliver.
I think there's also sort of a, a lot of longstanding truths or perceptions, um, that banks hold. Like, while I'm telling you your balance, so surely you know, you answer your question when I don't think we really understand across different segments, like what's the question the customer's trying to get answered in that moment? They're looking at the balance, the answer to that question should drive what we surface. So you gotta go a level deeper.
I think we have time for one more question.
Thank you. In the customer experience, there are a lot of small touchpoints and a lot of, or a lot of small touch points and fewer big opportunities to have an outsized impact on the customer's experience. So this morning we heard from Hancock Whitney sharing, um, the experience of, you know, lending $500 over and over and over again and keeping track of that on sticky notes and getting, you know, all but 300,000 of what, $23 million back. I'm sure that had a huge impact on those individuals' perception of Hancock Whitney and their loyalty to the bank. On the other hand, on the other end of the spectrum, Damien, you brought up, um, the performance of webpages and if someone is consistently waiting and waiting and waiting for a web page to load, that's going to turn them off from the experience and potentially drive them away from the organization.
So my question for you is whether you've observed, are there any specific touchpoints or jobs to be done or other aspects of the customer experience that tend to have an outsized impact on their engagement or continued loyalty to the brand? And if yes, what data or research, um, have you drawn on to determine those key drivers?
Yeah, I mean, I'll give you one example, which is we did a lot of research around sort of what jobs to be done or what things are in play when you have kids, right? So if you think about, now I have to think about household spending, what's my cash flow? Now I have to think about saving for college, now I have to think about insurance. The list is pretty long.
So I think you've gotta think about the intersection between what's occurring in that life moment and the solutions you can bring to the table, and then how you deliver those solutions across sort of the digital plus human experience. But definitely we've seen that sort of presence or, or at least planning to start a family is a significant life movement.
That's great. Yeah. And you're, you're right there are only so many situations where you've got a chance to kind of go deep with the customer in terms of their needs. We panel just before us talked about, you know, the online account opening experience. Obviously you want that to be fast, easy. I don't know if you want it frictionless. I think you need friction in certain places to keep, you know, things from a fraud perspective where they need to be. But that's a, again, I'll use the same phrase, don't squander that opportunity to, to talk with them about, okay, here's what you're doing, you're opening this, but really it's not the deposit account that matters. It's what you're gonna do with it, right?
So here's all the things you can do with the account you're opening, um, all the real life scenarios you can use a Zelle payment for, or bill payment and all that good stuff. Those are really great chances to, to really get engagement right at the start in an opportunity where you've got their attention.
That's great. And I would only add to that I think that if you think of it in that very broad categorization, it can be exceptionally overwhelming, right? There's so many touch points.
There's so many interactions that someone can have with a financial institution that you really have to have an area of focus. What are places that you know that are gonna be extremely important?
I mean, breaking it down to loans, right? That's one place because someone who is applying for a loan has a need otherwise, I mean, they're not out there. Just, I need some money for the heck of it. Although maybe there are some I don't, but I could probably lend you some. Um, you know, so, you know, being willing to say, I can't solve the world's problems with this right now, but here are a few places I can, can really make an impact. And then focusing on that, staying focused on that and saying, um, I know there's 400 billion interactions I could look at, but I'm gonna look at these four and we're gonna look at these four from end to end and find out where can we improve these processes and how can I help here? And then that keeps, I think people the ability to see that they can make a difference.
We can solve some problems and that gives us the ability to then go into the next and solve the next issue that we need to, to help serve the customers or the members that are coming to us for a need.
Way to bring us home. Fantastic. Well, I wanna thank Damien, Jana and Casey. These were fantastic insights that were shared. Thank you for your questions and thank you all for being here.
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