Research Outline

Face to Face Engagement in Banking


To understand, (based on the likely hypothesis that banking habits and choices are going to be changing over the next five years which will result in less human interaction), what value face to face engagement can bring to the banking world as it gradually becomes more digital and AI led. Specifically to receive research that shows customer expectations and trends that highlight what the consumer opinion is of the value of human interaction in the banking sector.

Early Findings

  • Genpact conducted research among 6,287 consumers in the U.S., U.K., and Australia that probed both general and generational attitudes on how consumers prefer their banking services to be delivered. A surprise in the research was the importance all groups put on still being able to deal with a person at certain times in their banking relationship.
  • While 27% of consumers responding to the survey say that they would try setting up a new account with a digital assistant such as Siri or Alexa, six in ten say that under current conditions visiting a branch makes opening an account easier.
  • Genpact’s analysis indicates that consumers’ continuing preference for traditional channels continues in the Age of the App because this is still where they receive the best customer support and personalized advice. "The personal touch is still important to consumers: they are most satisfied with in-branch and phone interactions."
  • Accenture polled 4,013 banking customers in North America in March 2016. The consumers were asked about what they want from their banking relationships. A vast majority (86.7%) of that group said they expected to still use physical bank branches two years in the future.
  • Invoca's report, 'The State of the Consumer Banking Experience', is based on the findings of a survey of more than 1,200 adults in the U.S. A highlight of the report was that, despite large investments in digital advertising by financial institutions, consumers continue to rely heavily on offline interactions when making important decisions about their finances. When considering a loan, in-person meetings and telephone calls were their preferred method of contact. In fact, more than a quarter (26%) of consumers made at least four telephone calls to financial institutions before deciding which to use and 72% made at least two.
  • If a bank client feels like they are interfacing with a robot, they are more inclined to dial “0” for human assistance.
  • A 2018 report by the Sitel Group, found that 70% of consumers would rather speak to a human customer service agent than a chatbot. Digital banks are beginning to realize this. It’s why they are increasingly moving toward a hybrid model that combines digital services with human touch points.
  • Research has also found that when people feel anxious, they especially prefer personal interaction: A 2019 study published in Harvard Business Review found that when customers are anxious, they feel dissatisfied with the decisions they make using self-service technology, even if the decisions they make match their goals.
  • Many consumers turn to credit unions over banks because of their reputation for more personalized service. Credit unions, which adhere to a collective philosophy of “people helping people,” regularly outrank banks when it comes to customer service. The more personalized the service, the better the experience.

Summary Of Our Early Findings Relevant To The Goals

  • Our first hour of research provided some insights surrounding the value consumers place on face to face interactions in the banking world.
  • We assumed a global focus for the research. If a more targeted approach is desired, for example, the United States, this would have to be clearly communicated to us in any reply.
  • Please select one or more of the options provided in the proposed scoping section below.