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Nearly three-quarters of businesses are more likely to join a bank with a fully digital onboarding process

New research from Encompass Corporation reveals new insight into business attitudes towards banks’  digital onboarding and risk assessment processes

Almost three-quarters (73 per cent) of businesses are more likely to select a bank that could perform all relevant regulatory checks digitally, according to official research from Encompass Corporation, the Know You Customer (KYC) RegTech software provider.

The data, which was obtained via a survey of 200 senior business decision-makers in large and medium sized UK companies conducted by independent polling company Censuswide, also found that 57 per cent of businesses are still with a provider that requires some paper-based documentation for onboarding and compliance checks.

Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, paper-based communication and documentation has become increasingly obsolete in a society-wide effort to reduce contact and streamline services, however, some banks have fallen behind. Almost two-thirds of business decision makers (64 per cent), for example, agreed that the implementation of social distancing measures has exposed the digital divide between traditional banks and specialist financial services that provide a truly digital service.

Furthermore, more than one-third (37 per cent) admitted that their current banking provider’s onboarding process is too slow and not fit for purpose, while 44 per cent said that the process of opening a business bank account is no longer in line with their expectations. 58 per cent also agreed that ‘innovation’ is a key differentiator when choosing a banking partner.

Interestingly, though, more than half of business decision makers (56 per cent) did say their bank has noticeably improved other aspects of its digital services since the start of the outbreak. Services mentioned include online consultations and transactions.

Wayne Johnson, CEO and co-founder, Encompass Corporation, comments:

“The Covid-19 pandemic has permanently altered the way that businesses interact with their banking and financial services providers, increasing the need for online services and resulting in expectations of a much faster approach to onboarding and compliance checks. Sticking with slow,  paper-based processes for critical tasks such as Know Your Customer (KYC) checks will, in many cases, no longer be tolerated, especially with customers clearly expecting the highest standards of digital services from their provider.

“The time has come for banks to fully embrace automated, smart decision-making, enabling seamless compliance with changing regulation, which will reduce costs and improve customer service for the long-term.”