The private banking market is a maturing space with a rapid evolution of roles. Accenture estimates that 35% of market share is at risk by 2020, with competitors ranging from traditional banks to new entrants using digitally disruptive technology and entering the wealth management space

Organizations must prepare for both client and workforce demographics to shift as Millennials are set to surpass Baby Boomers as the largest generation. Fully 75% of the workforce will be comprised of Millennials by 2025,​bringing their digital expectations – for social collaboration, for broad, un-conflicted advice, for omni-channel access and more – and their needs for transparency and control to commercial interactions.  Research shows that 44% of Millennials are “Highly Interested” in mobile services that provide access to their dedicated advisor to help them whenever and wherever they need such help.  For ultra-high net worth individuals, this figure climbs to 63%, showing a correlation between youth and wealth in terms of increased mobile services and access.        

Using digital technologies and mobile applications allows private banks to provide their clients access to the tailored services and communications they expect. Client demands and expectations are evolving, and private banks are responding with new digital and mobile approaches to meet both internal (regulatory and financial) and external (relationship building, remote access, new products and services) requirements. It’s about developing an omnichannel strategy to offer a differentiating digital experience.

What is the best way to develop a relevant solution? 

We believe the correct approach is to build an integrated mobile solution, with an app including both basic and wealth management options but additional services as well.  Private banking mobile apps inspired by retail offerings often fall short, as they neglect the concepts of prestige and personalized advice traditionally associated with the private banking sector.  However, it is better not to have a mobile app at all rather than go to market with an unsecured or sub-par app.  Private banks that simply copy retail apps risk damaging both their competitive position and their image.

For private banks, mobile app development and implementation should be a means, not an end.  What might be considered an innovation today will be table stakes tomorrow.  Private banks should be thinking about future clients’ expectations and about ways to build and maintain trust as younger customers seek new models. 

Private banks should develop their mobile offerings to make it easier for clients to manage their own wealth, to improve client interaction with the bank, and to ensure the security of accounts and related data.  Mobile apps will not in themselves provide a competitive advantage (although not having such an app may be a competitive disadvantage), but a well-designed, secure mobile app that is part of an integrated solution – including both core banking and private bank-specific functionalities – can be a vital element of a private bank’s digital strategy. 

How to identify the fundamentals needs of a private bank mobile app?

Private banks need to combine an innovative, client-centric offer with the experience, products and services appropriate to the expectations of the wealth management market.  The app of the future should include transactional features but should also integrate a high level of dedicated service adapted to new customer behaviors. 

Private banks also need the proper tools to be able to access and examine the large quantities of business data now available and to develop insights to address evolving customer expectations.  When integrated with customer relationship management (CRM) tools already in place, this information can be used to enhance private banks’ value propositions.

We think that private banking is the “haute couture” of banking. We expect from haute couture to take risk and propose an innovative mobile experience. Mathilde Veillard and her team devoted a point of view this subject-"An improved mobile application for Uplift wealth management"

On this point of view, we explain how banks can capitalize on new technologies for mobile solution in an increasingly demanding regulatory environment, including in terms of quality and data protection. In the next article, I'll discuss in more detail the essential features of a disruptive mobile solution. To be continued!

Want to discuss how mobile applications can create value for your business?
Feel free to contact Vanessa Muller or Jamel Hachmi  for a chat!