Written by Stuart Mullins and

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The use of AI software in providing audit and compliance roles, conversational interfaces (“chatbots”) and analytics to identify and match clients best positioned for particular investments is and has been in operation for some time in the commercial banking sector.

In the UK banking environment, there is a continued increase in offering and take up of digital banking. As retail banking branches close, online and digital offerings having grown expeditiously. Changes to retail payments regulation and the revolution of AI has, as with many industries, dramatically altered the conventional landscape and resulted in many Fintech’s coming into the market and proving fierce competition.

Offerings however, go beyond simple current account and online savings – currently the ranges of functionality from digital providers extends from online accounts that give you real time account monitoring to those which allow you to globally spend using local currencies charged at the inter-bank exchange rates. These accounts can be opened in as little as a couple of minutes and many don’t charge fees.

As cognitive technology continues to develop so will future functionality. AI is already being piloted which categorises and identifies trends and irregularities in spending patterns –predicting balances, identifying a need to cancel outdated subscriptions, identifying savings opportunities and predicting financial wellbeing based on spending patterns and history.

Development is also underway to create virtual banking assistants who will be able to interact with customers by interpreting speech and messaging and responding instantly. Does this mean the end for the conventional high street banking experience? Maybe not the end, but without a doubt AI has and is continuing to impact the way in which traditional retail banking operators are providing services such as embracing the use of “Chatbots”. HSBC has launched “Amy” to provide help with customer queries and many high street banks have looked at their branches and invested in the look and feel keen to reflect a more digital age.

14th August 2018