Artificial intelligence systems will rapidly become indispensable aids to bank interactions with customers, says UK consulting firm Accenture.Researchers say AI will become the main way banks and customers communicate with customers within the next three years.
The change is happening quite rapidly.Banks like Royal Bank of Scotland already use chatbots to answer the bulk of customers' questions online.
The Accenture report is based on data provided by 600 bankers and other experts.
The most surprising conclusion may be that respondents believe AI systems will help banks in their efforts to create a more humanlike experience for their customers.
"The big paradox here is that people think technology will lead to banking becoming more and more automated and less and less personalized," said Accenture banking-research head Alan McIntyre, "but what we've seen coming through here is the view that technology will actually help banking become a lot more personalized.It will give people the impression that the bank knows them a lot better, and in many ways it will take banking back to the feeling that people had when there were more human interactions."
It's not just bankers who think AI can improve the interactions between customers and financial institutions.Customers think so too.Accenture says customers welcome interaction with AI systems.
"With things like Netflix, customers are used to smart AI offering advice in the background, and we found consumers are surprisingly willing to accept robotic advice about banking products," said McIntyre.