Today, millennials are the largest generation in the United States – and their levels of entrepreneurship are unprecedented. Millennials are starting more businesses than previous generations, and they’re starting them at a younger age than their predecessors. And, according to one recent study, three-quarters of millennial small business owners are in the start-up or growth phase of the business lifecycle, which means they’re currently in the most formative period of their careers as entrepreneurs.
For these millennials – who are more willing to assume personal and business debt to achieve their financial goals – banks will be an important source for both financial assistance and strategic advice. In this way, the rise of millennial entrepreneurship is a unique opportunity for banks to develop long-term relationships with the business leaders of the future.
Of course, those relationships are not a given. Financial institutions need to make the right investments to attract millennial entrepreneurs. And while digital services like mobile apps and online payments are a must, banks also need to rethink the most traditional elements of their business: visits to a brick-and-mortar bank branch.
As the first true digital natives, millennials don’t separate their online and offline lives. They believe that technology can – and should – enhance their personal relationships with their bank. And if their local bank branch doesn’t offer the right technology to bolster those relationships, millennials will find another bank that does. One survey found that 92 percent of millennials would choose a bank based on the quality of its digital services.
For banks, then, the key to attracting millennials clients is to use technology as a way of creating a more connected and personalized banking experience—one rich with client data and insights at the touch of a button. The good news is that, at branches across the country, digital innovations can already transform brick and mortar branches into mobile-first, immersive help centers – improving the customer experience and increasing employee productivity while ensuring data remains secure.
In three key areas, digital innovations are already creating a more tailored, more productive, and more secure bank branch by:
- Offering customized and personal experiences for clients and customers. Banks can leverage recent advances to create a faster, more convenient banking experience. When customers walk into their local bank branch, they can immediately access personalized services through tablet-based kiosks. Customers requiring additional assistance can open their mobile banking app and select their preferred service. Their name, wait time, and other appointment details, will then appear on both their phone and IoT-enabled digital signage. And while they wait, customers can check out exclusive, engaging content on pre-loaded tablets in the waiting area.
- Improving back office productivity through automated and connected technologies. In bank lobbies, employees can use customized mobile devices to walk around the branch and offer customers tailored services, based on individual profiles and preferences, from any location. In conference rooms, they can use dynamic and immersive digital displays to help high-value customers develop personalized financial strategies.
- Securing a rock solid security framework that extends beyond branch office walls. This year alone, the Internet of Things will connect 8.4 billion devices across the globe. By 2020, it could be as many as 50 billion. If not properly secured, every one of those connections can present a security risk. Fortunately, mobile security innovations have kept up with the pace of IoT innovations, giving banks everything they need to meet future security needs. Iris scanners and other forms of biometric authentication, as well as robust security built in at hardware levels of mobile devices, can help customers verify their accounts and employees safeguard their devices. And cloud-based mobile device management can help can the bank’s IT system keep devices updated and secure.
For banks hoping to attract millennial, entrepreneurial clients, these offerings aren’t just bonus features – they’re requirements to remain competitive. Digital innovations can lead to a mobile-first banking experience that is more flexible, more personal, and more seamless. The result? More data security. More productive employees. And most importantly, more satisfied customers.