- Millennials have different communications preferences than their parents
- They expect digital experiences with the human touch
- Cloud communications platforms digitize communications without sacrificing personalization
Millennials, the cohort of people born between 1980 and 1996, have been accused of changing many institutions, including retail and the food and beverage industry. Loan servicing has also been required to adapt to Millennials’ preferences and habits.
Financial services for millennials: Defining new contact methods and priorities
Financial institutions can make loan servicing more appealing to Millennials by providing a smooth, engaging customer experience.
What Millennials want out of the loan servicing experience
Millennials, the cohort of people born between 1980 and 1996, are a diverse group, yet by and large, they’re a generation that feels comfortable with digital products and services. They’re more likely to do their banking (including loan requests and repayments) through apps than they are to set foot in a branch; 98 percent of Millennials use banking apps for activities such as paying bills and viewing account balances.
At the same time, they don’t necessarily want a completely digital experience. Millennials also value the human touch, and they want the option to speak with a real person.
They also look for a company that offers around-the-clock service as well as one that responds quickly to queries. Financial institutions should also offer more than one communication channel, which gives Millennials the flexibility and empowerment they crave. One example might be a chatbot that operates 24/7 so that they can receive answers to the questions they need at any time of day or night.
Here are a few other fast facts about Millennials that reveal what they want from a financial institution:
- Millennials account for approximately 47% of all mobile banking and finance users. (PaymentsDive.com)
- Millennials average 114 transactions per month with their financial services organizations. (BAI)
- 43% of Millennials have abandoned a mobile banking transaction because of poor user experience. (PaymentsDive.com)
- 48% of Millennials have accounts at more than one type of financial institution. (Kasasa.com)
- 59% of millennials look for personal advice on topics ranging from savings to budgeting to credit cards, and they will contact social media or chat representatives for advice. (EverFi)
- Millennials are the most likely generation to switch their primary bank. (Gallup)
- 75% of Millennials say they would switch their primary financial services organization for a better mobile experience. (BAI)
- 84% of Millennials are comfortable with AI-driven financial advice. (The Financial Brand)
- A third of Millennials want access to information, anytime, anywhere, and on any device.
How can financial institutions appeal to Millennial customers?
Appealing to Millennial customers doesn’t have to be challenging or complicated. Millennials value simplicity and authenticity; they’ll notice if a financial institution hasn’t invested in the right solution to streamline digital experiences and communication. It’s why 44 percent of Millennials only bank with three big banks (Chase, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo), because the mobile experience at those institutions is superior to their competitors.
A cloud communications platform enables financial institutions to reach Millennials and fill their need for a streamlined experience. What does a streamlined experience include? It’s about being able to submit information digitally, having the ability to connect with the lender around the clock, and getting answers to questions on the spot. Who wants to waste time bringing in documentation to a bank and waiting for weeks for mortgage approval?
How can cloud communications platforms improve the loan servicing experience for Millennials?
Cloud communications platforms are a set of communication tools in a single cloud-based platform, including:
- Video conference
- File sharing
- Screen sharing
They can also be used in a contact center so it’s easier for borrowers and lenders to communicate.
A cloud communications platform digitizes your communications by enabling customers to connect with lenders from any device and to share information electronically. Here’s how:
- Offering flexible digital communication channels such as video conferencing, telephony, and chat
- Providing self-service options
- Making it easy to collaborate internally—lender employees can share information digitally with a few clicks
- Being available around the clock
Offering flexible digital channels
Millennials don’t necessarily share their parents’ preferences for communicating with financial institutions.
Research from TD Bank shows 59 percent of Millennials search for advice on finance topics online, then will reach out to the financial institution through social media chat or through live chat on the brand’s website.
Millennials also feel comfortable communicating through video conferences. Don’t discount the phone; Millennials place calls to their financial institutions 1.7 times more often than their Baby Boomer parents.
A financial services communications solution offers chat, telephony, and video conference for flexible communications options during the lending process; borrowers and lenders can easily communicate with one another and collaborate through screen and file sharing.
Providing self-service options
Millennials prefer self-service. Research from Chase shows that 98 percent of that cohort uses banking apps.
Why is that the case? Millennials like the speed and convenience of being able to do things themselves. It’s typically faster than contacting a customer service representative for help.
Financial services communications solutions provide self-service options in the form of knowledge bases and chatbots. Millennial customers don’t need to turn to someone to answer their questions about loan servicing; they can find information at their fingertips.
Making it easy to collaborate
Another thing Millennials value is the ability to share information easily. If there’s an issue with their loan, they want to know right away. Furthermore, they’re used to taking screenshots of problems and sending them to customer service representatives when things go wrong.
By using a cloud communications solution, lenders and customers can share information easily. Lenders can notify customers through text messages, phone, or even video conference that there’s an issue to handle, and file and screen sharing capabilities allow customers and representatives from the lender to transfer digital information instantly between one another.
Creating a dedicated hotline to a representative
Financial services communications platforms have contact center functionality. They can be configured so a customer can call or chat with a dedicated customer service representative. For customers, this saves time and energy; they don’t have to explain their history to a new representative every time they interact with the lender.
Providing representatives access to customer information
Part of what enables a smooth and effective customer experience is when the customer service representative you’re speaking to has access to your history with the loan. That means the borrower doesn’t have to recount everything she’s been through with the lender; it’s all in front of the customer service representative.
Financial services communications solutions integrate with systems of record such as CRMs, so customer service representatives can better help their customers. The integration also allows for auto logging calls and updating the CRM record. In this way, more insight about the borrower is captured.
Being available around the clock
Research shows that Millennials expect information on demand. A third of them want access to information, anytime, anywhere, and on any device.
Financial services communications solutions automate communications. This technology can send notifications or messages whenever a customer takes an action, no matter what time of the day or night it is. Additionally, they can be configured so a chatbot can answer customer questions outside of office hours.
Create a better customer experience with RingCentral’s cloud communications platform
RingCentral’s financial services communications platform provides flexible communications options, self-service capabilities, easy information sharing, a personalized experience, and automation. To learn more, get a demo.
Originally published Oct 19, 2021, updated Oct 18, 2021