Three minutes to leave my bank of 30 years. Apps are delivering a service revolution

leaving my bank

It’s taken me 30 years to do it, but this week I surprised myself by finally parting company with my bank and moving to a mobile only one. It’s a maverick move for me, but it felt good. In fact it feels great.

I’m not alone, according to research released by Yolt this week, 70% of consumers are now using apps to manage their finances, up from 40% a few years ago.

It doesn’t surprise me – it is the norm for ‘millennials’, and anyone with a fascination for technology to adopt these sorts of lifestyle apps. And let’s face it, anyone who knows me will say that I love technology and how it can change the way we live and work.

I always believe there is a better way to do something and often technology has the answer. In fact the need for another way is why I founded inniAccounts.

But friends and colleagues will also say that I don’t jump in right away. I like to weigh up the odds and ensure I have the facts before I make a decision. It’s the engineer in me.

So even though it has taken me until now to switch, mobile banking has intrigued me for a while. I’ve dabbled with various apps, including Yolt, to get my head around how they work, what they offer and how it would benefit me.

But more than that I’ve been looking at it from the point of view of customer service – the very thing that keeps me awake at night in my role at inni.

The list of questions I’ve been researching are long – why would our clients want or need mobile banking, what difference would it make and how should we be integrating it into our services? I’ve also considered what we can learn from the app developers that would improve our own service models.

The answers became apparent quickly: simplicity to switch, set up and use, price and an overwhelming sense of control. It puts the banks’ version of customer service to shame.

Despite these advantages being abundantly clear, no one app or bank had the complete package. So true to my nature, I’ve watched from the sidelines and waited until a challenger bank came along that did all these things. It’s taken a couple of years for the right one to come along, but now they exist. Switching lived up to my expectation. It really was as easy as a click of a button. It was liberating.

Now I have far more information than I ever had about my finances, and in time I expect this to grow as more services are integrated and other apps are aggregated.

For us at inni, the challenge will be to keep pace with the adoption of financial apps and help self-employed people integrate their business accounting information with them.

Contractors and freelancers are a prime market for this emerging sector and I’m pleased to say we’re on the road to making it happen. Not only will we have functionality that integrates we also have plenty of ideas as to how we can achieve a new level of service with ambitious plans to deliver it sooner rather than later.

But until then, I’m going to continue learning, continue dabbling as new apps come along, and bask in the glory of joining the millennials and taking control.