The Next Age in Financial Services Culture

It’s no secret that new technology has redefined user experience and expectations for all products and services. This is especially true with millennials, who are natives of digital modes of correspondence. For bank customers, (See Figure 1) online and mobile are now the preferred channels for interaction.

With convenience and integration with daily activities so important to any consumer experience, it’s easy to see why fintech startups such as Stripe and SoFi—who offer services conveniently online—are thriving.

Financial services companies are feeling the pinch. 86 percent of insurers, for instance, have indicated a portion of their business could be lost to fintech in the next five years.3

To effectively compete, brick-and-mortar organizations must offer the same sophisticated yet simple-to-use experience. An intuitive user interface on any device, the personal touch of social media, and seamless communications, even from a multi-division company, are now essentials.

Let’s be honest: How many more new financing options will a customer have by this time next year?

Figure 1: Customers' preferred Interactions at Retail Banks.2
5% 10% 15% 20% 25% 30% 35% 40% 0%
Branch visit
Mobile interaction
Online interaction

A transforming talent market.

Decades ago, financial services jobs were top career choices for the best and brightest. But that was a long time ago.

In a 2016 workplace happiness survey of over 12,000 professionals, financial services employees gave low ratings for both on-the-job joy and level of interest in their work compared to other industries.5

Today, many business-and analytically-minded graduates are turning to fintechs or insurance technology firms (insurtechs), or even businesses like Less regulatory oversight, accelerated career paths, and large equity payouts are strong selling points. Even disruptive technology companies are luring talent away from financial services firms.

Can a traditional financial services company compete with getting into “the Google of fintech” on the ground floor?

To counter this trend, the rigid structure and hierarchies of financial services must give way to a company culture that rewards innovation—and nurtures employees. Whether the cold, stodgy, out-of-touch institution is fact or just false perception for your firm, your recruiting team must navigate it.

Figure 2: Millennials see banking differently.4
  1. 2 Michael Grebe, Nicole Mönter, Brad Noakes, Jean-Werner de T’Serclaes, Ben Wade, and Ian Walsh, “Global Retail Banking 2016: Banking on Digital Simplicity,” BCG article, May 10, 2016,
  2. 3 PwC Global, “Insurance’s New Normal: Driving Innovation with InsurTech,” Global InsurTech Report 2017,
  3. 4 Brian Solis, “Disrupt or Be Disrupted: The Endemic of Banking ‘Out of Touchness’,” The Financial Brand article, July 11, 2017,
  4. 5 Robert Half, “Can Finance Professionals Be Happy at Work?” The Robert Half Blog, November 22, 2016,