Ailleron, a Krakow-based fintech company, which in 2013 implemented a LiveBank virtual branch at mBank under the name of Ekspert Online (Online Expert), enriched it with new, useful functionalities. Recently, the bank’s customers have been able to communicate with the Experts via a video channel, even when using their mobile devices, and the bank’s employees are supported by artificial intelligence.
Ailleron’s flagship product, LiveBank Virtual Branch, was launched at mBank five years ago under the name of Ekspert Online (Online Expert). The new customer service channel quickly gained popularity, and its skillful use and opportunities that it offers were recognized and rewarded at Finovate conferences in New York and London.
Currently, in connection with the development of the system, the bank has decided to implement additional functions that both support the work of the Expert and help the customers.
Video chat and “continuous” chat in a mobile application
Initially, Ekspert Online was available only in desktop browsers, enabling secure video, audio and chat conversations, customer authentication and authorization of transactions during an ongoing call. Efficient and interactive collaboration was supported by features such as screen sharing, document presentation, predefined links and graphical tools. All interactions in all forms of communication are recorded and archived.
Recently, Ailleron has integrated the system with the bank’s mobile application, enabling customers to use the Ekspert Online service on their iOS and Android mobile devices. Additionally, the communication module has been enhanced with a “continuous” chat function, known from popular communicators, such as Facebook Messenger. This allows both the customers and the bank to store the entire conversation history in chat, along with uploaded materials and links, giving the customer the feeling of a “continuous connection” with the Expert and the ability to send questions even when the Expert is not available. On the other hand, the bank’s advisor has access to the information sent earlier and can, for example, change the type of the call to video at the customer’s request.
Market trends in recent years indicate a clear increase in the popularity of mobile channels as a place where it is possible not only to communicate, but also to carry out an increasingly wide range of transactions, which so far were only available by calling the bank on the phone or during a visit to a brick-and-mortar branch. Instant messaging apps, such as Messenger, WhatsApp and Hangouts, have become an inseparable part of everyday communication. Having the above in mind and following the strategy of building the best possible customer experience in contact with mBank, we decided to enable our customers to contact our Online Expert using a video channel and chat via our mobile application. We paid a lot of attention to the chat so that its functionalities would reflect the experience that our customers see every day, for example when they are using Messenger to communicate with others. Conversation history and notifications about incoming messages are only some of the many solutions implemented as part of the project, carried out in cooperation with Ailleron. Very positive feedback from our customers1) shows us that we have taken the right path, which in turn poses additional challenges for us in terms of further product development,said Jarosław Ścigała, Manager of the Contact Center Development Department at mBank.
Intelligent support for the Online Expert
The growing popularity of communication via chat, along with the ever-growing expectations of customers with regard to the transactions they can carry out using this channel and the shortest possible waiting time for getting through to the agent, are challenges faced not only by mBank, but also the entire banking sector. That is why, in 2017, mBank’s Data Scientist Team started working on development of an intelligent assistant, whose task is to support the agents during conversations with customers during the chat. The result is mAIA, an artificial intelligence that creates the potential to meet these challenges by automating the handling of parts of customer interactions. Thanks to the cooperation with Ailleron, the new solution was successfully implemented in 2018 at mBank’s Contact Center.
I am glad that we can develop and implement the most innovative solutions in the market together with mBank. Our long-term cooperation has been a great adventure, and I am very glad that we have our little share in the recognition of mBank as one of the most innovative banks in the world. At Ailleron, we are constantly looking at the global banking market in order to best adapt our platform and its capabilities to the requirements of banking customers. I am quite certain that we will have an opportunity to present many more breakthrough solutions to the world, said Piotr Skrabski, Vice-President of Ailleron SA and LiveBank General Director.
Cooperation with Ailleron, a company open to new challenges, actively adapting to the changing market environment, gives us a unique opportunity to build a new quality of service in CC channels. We are glad that throughout subsequent years of cooperation, new ideas and challenges emerge, which we can develop and implement together, building a friendly, accessible and professional point of contact for mBank customers, which they can use to deal with every issue they have, says Aleksandra Buczkowska, Contact Center Director at mBank.
For years, mBank has been synonymous with innovative banking solutions, being the first fully on-line bank in Poland, setting the direction for the development of mobile and on-line banking. The mBank Group is the fourth largest financial institution in Poland in terms of assets, offering retail, corporate and investment banking and other financial services, such as leasing, factoring, commercial real estate financing, brokerage, wealth management, corporate finance, capital markets consulting and insurance distribution.
In 2017, the growth of mBank’s customer base was almost entirely organic, reaching 5,342,000 retail customers and 22,048 corporate customers.
Historically, mBank has developed its business on the foundation of corporate banking. Since its establishment in 1986, the Bank has provided services to the largest Polish companies engaged in foreign trade. In 2000, mBank started its operations in the retail segment, creating the first fully on-line bank in Poland. Since 2001, mBank has also been operating in the traditional retail banking market, offering a wide range of products and services to affluent customers and small companies expecting access to high quality, personalized services at its branches. mBank is the only Polish bank to successfully replicate its business model developed in the country on foreign markets, after starting retail operations in Czechia and Slovakia in 2007.
Additional information can be found at: www.mbank.pl