Just as retail has shifted from physical high-street stores to omni-channel experiences, so too has banking. As customers adopt payment apps, phone-based finance aggregator tools and other fintech services, banks no longer have exclusive claims on the customer relationship – and nor will they enjoy the same complete view of their customers’ financial affairs as they did when face-to-face meetings in high street branches were the norm.

In an omnichannel world, managing the core relationships with customers is still about having personalized conversations, giving people the help and guidance they are looking for, and – hopefully – getting them to buy the bank’s products and services.

Banks already have the power to recreate the intimacy of the branch experience online – through a unified customer experience. A recent study of Swiss millennials found that a unified experience is exactly what people are looking for: almost half want a single banking app to deal with all their finances. To make this work, banks need effective ways to tie together all the conversations they are having on digital channels, and this means having a CRM system that is ready for the digital economy.

CRM has to deliver:

  1. A consistent experience across all channels. This not only communicates the brand effectively, but also enables the bank to identify and unlock cross-selling and upselling opportunities. For customers, consistency translates into ease of use and convenience, giving people fast access to the information or service they are seeking across all channels.
  2. A 360-degree, single-pane view of all customer interactions: real-time processing ensures an up-to-date view of all the interactions the customer has had with the bank – including the most recent. Customers will understandably be frustrated if they have to repeat their message across multiple platforms.
  3. Smart recommendations: banks can harness the power of data analytics and AI to offer customers products based on their preferences, and to tailor marketing campaigns far more precisely around individual needs. It makes it possible to manage the entire lifecycle of the relationship.


Cognizant has a proven track record of bringing CRM into the digital era for banks. To learn how Cognizant helped one bank create a 360-degree view of its customers, download the case study here.