Digitization in banking—for example, ever-increasing customer migration from branches to digital channels, access to any banking product online or growing use of intelligent automation in customer interactions—will cause most bank sales jobs to change or disappear. Because customer reliance on people for advice will continue, the human touch is still a key factor in the success of banks.
What does it mean for the sales force? Is it still core to the banking business model, or a legacy component that is impeding digital transformation?
To better understand the impact of digital on the banking sales force, and how the human resources and sales & marketing functions should collaborate to address challenges, Accenture and Efma conducted a series of think tank webinars with senior executives whose organizations are members of Efma. The resulting report summarizes insights from these banking leaders.
The banking sales force: Now what?
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In the digital world, banks’ sales force employees will no longer be transaction specialists. They will be professionals focused on helping customers manage their wealth and long-term goals by interacting with digital tools. They will respond effectively to changing customer expectations and behavior by taking advantage of advanced technologies and new digital processes.
To achieve this growth-driving position, even in the face of a severe skills shortage in the branches, the sales network and HR functions need to commit to three key actions:
Empower the sales force with the tools and talent that enable it to provide seamless, personalized customer interactions;
Educate the sales force using new training content and redesigned digital learning;
Engage the sales force with a cultural transformation program and non-monetary reward systems to develop a team that is committed to their digital revolution and to the digital transformation of their organization.
Higher skills plus digital empowerment will not only be the salvation of the banking sales force, but of banks’ customer experience.