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‘They don’t have legacy technology or thinking’: Citizens Bank learns from, competes with new digital banks

  • Citizens Bank draws lessons from innovation in banking experiences introduced by fintechs.
  • Nevertheless, the $160 billion bank is convinced human interaction will always be important for its customers.
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‘They don’t have legacy technology or thinking’: Citizens Bank learns from, competes with new digital banks

Incumbent banks are paying attention to what’s happening with challenger banks. And, increasingly, they’re taking inspiration from some of the innovations new digital banks have created for the customer journey.

“It’s incredibly important to be thinking about challengers, what role they’re playing in the market, and how they’ve interpreted customer needs,” said Beth Johnson, chief experience officer at Citizens Bank, last week at Tearsheet’s inaugural Challengers Conference. “[You can see] how innovative challengers can be because they don’t have the legacy — not only the legacy architecture, but the legacy thinking that many of the incumbents have.”

Citizens Bank takes a build-buy-partner approach to launching new services and functionality for its customers, tapping into partners with a special feel for new financial experiences. With SigFig, the bank launched a digital wealth solution a few years ago. Partnerships like this one are a win-win, according to Johnson.

 


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