BNF Bank plc, is an established key player in the banking sector, offering individual and business clients a highly personalised and tailor-made service through a network of retail branches and a Corporate and Business Banking Centre.
EBO.ai develops a personalised
automated banking experience using AI
Prior to adopting Artificial Intelligence into its customer support system, BNF Bank handled its client queries and interactions via semi-manual sorting and response. This led to a time-lag and long waiting periods for customers, one of the biggest contributing factors to poor customer experience in the finance industry (The Financial Brand, 2017).
BNF’s physical operation was not able to scale up with such flexibility to handle the influx of requests and so additional customer experience gaps were being created during periods of high demand. Workload, staff attrition or budgetary constraints further aggravated this gap and led to loss of leads coming through during non-working hours.
BNF Bank also wanted to adapt and meet the needs of today's increasingly digital-savvy customers who, in fact, expect financial services to use emerging technologies to make banking easier (Edelman, 2019). To do this, the organisation required a digital solution that offered human interaction at scale, maximised every opportunity and interaction with customers and ultimately, enhanced customer experience.
Head of Technology Solutions & Digital
“We are at a pivotal moment in the banking sector. Digital-banks are on the rise with savvy cross-platform services that challenge the nature of our industry. At BNF we pride ourselves in being adaptable and ambitious, as we forge lasting relationships with customers through tailor-made products and services. Most importantly, we listen to their needs. We are investing in technology that helps us get closer to the community that we serve, offering improved customer experiences.We’ve chosen EBO.ai as a partner to support our journey of incorporating Artificial Intelligence into our core business offering”.
CFO, BNF BANK
Immediate and efficient customer engagement
EBO.ai created a custom-built Virtual Agent (VA), named Becs, which would automate BNF Bank’s customer service. Responding to customers instantly and on a 24/7 basis would allow the Bank to capture leads that would usually be lost during out-of-office hours.
Becs would be implemented across the company’s Facebook channels and website, to ensure accessibility to customers and reduce operating costs associated with the service.
The Virtual Agent would allow the Bank to draw closer to its customers by operating via Natural Language Processing (NLP) which would use language dialogues and workflows to answer user's queries. Its Artificial Intelligence capabilities would allow the VA to learn as it goes along, continuously updating its language library and complexity of workflows. At the same time, EBO.ai's NLP engineers would also carry out performance reviews to optimise the VA on an ongoing basis and ensure that the VA's NLP is recognising user's intents effectively.
Increased customer lifetime value
The intelligent conversational agent would also talk to each customer personally, understanding the context of the conversation as well as the emotions, intent and tone of customers. Furthermore, the VA would help to improve customer lifetime value by remembering customer preferences and have the ability to maintain a relationship with the customer after the initial interaction.
Enhanced lead qualification
The VA would be trained to answer a vast range of customer intents, from booking appointments to opening loans. On interaction, EBO.ai’s VA would be able to qualify the incoming lead and direct it to the correct department, ensuring staff works on the right prospects. Should a conversation require human takeover, the Bank's staff would easily be able to access the backend interface to handle the chat and continue the conversation.
Deeper understanding of customers
The backend interface would also provide BNF Bank with a vast range of data captured from the customer dialogues. This data would provide the organisation with a deeper understanding of their customers, ultimately enabling them to make informed strategic decisions based on analysis and predictions as well as do away with complex software to collect and analyse results.
In just three months, BNF Bank’s Virtual Agent, Becs handled hundreds of conversations. Each conversation was handled entirely by the VA, from start to finish, requiring no human intervention. This is a significant result showing the reliability of the VA and its ability to reduce customer waiting time, increase customer satisfaction and save the company time and resources.
The increasing customer usage and interaction with the organisation's Virtual Agent, reveals that BNF is on the right track in adapting its service towards today's digital-savvy customer whilst managing to upscale its operation without the cost of growing a face-to-face department.
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