Ask the Experts: Remote Deposit Capture Solutions for Financial Institutions
Ashish Bhatia, Alogent's VP Product Management, recently spoke with RemoteDepositCapture.com about the biggest RDC challenges facing the banking industry in today's “new normal." The original interview can be found here on RemoteDepositCapture.com
1. What are the biggest challenges facing the banking industry today in the “new normal”? How can RDC capabilities help FIs adapt properly and assuage uncertainties in a changing marketplace?
Given stay-at-home orders, the resulting surge in remote channels necessitates ensuring payment infrastructure and platforms can sustain the added influx of usage. With this, we also need to be mindful of an increase in payment fraud. Fraudsters go where the money is, and today, most transactions are taking place through online, mobile and digital channels - especially considering the recent issuance of treasury and government checks sent to those during stay-at-home orders. Assuaging uncertainty requires turning challenges into opportunities as we adapt to the “new normal.”
A bank or credit union that owns the omni-channel strategy has an opportunity to optimize RDC solutions, empowering consumer and business account holders with premium remote experiences that combine user wants with organizational needs. While users want a simple and consistent UX no matter how they transact, banks and credit unions strive for enterprise-wide collaboration through the removal of internal data silos, the ability to apply customized business rules for their specific institution or business unit, a centralized reporting capability, and risk management.
2. RDC is an existing space. What types of capabilities or features are your customers asking about and is Alogent offering to differentiate FIs in today’s market?
Mobile deposit and image-enabled ATMs or kiosks are commonplace today and more of a need to have than a differentiated offering. A newer take on mobile deposit is through a cloud-based offering that helps institutions differentiate themselves in a few ways. First, the solution is ideal for those seeking flexibility and a quick return on their more 'traditional' mobile remote payments ecosystem – Alogent, for example, has some FI clients who went live in just a few months after a contract signature. The time from start to go-live can be quick working through a consultative approach. Fortified with real-time fraud detection, the institutions gain comprehensive access to the most current software capabilities in a secure environment, while saving on the IT overhead and time-management costs related to support, upgrades and maintenance – that’s all on us. This cloud-based solution is also applicable to both individuals and corporates since it scales and offers international capabilities and can even benefit non-traditional FIs like check cashers.
Speaking of businesses or merchant capture, we all know that this specific market segment has similar, but different needs, than their consumers counterparts, including the need to deposit a higher volume of checks in one transaction. Here, feature-rich, easy-to-deposit solutions through desktop and web-based platforms are key since depositing 10 or so checks or more with a mobile device is often too cumbersome. Although merchant capture is not new, a device and operating system agnostic solution does differentiate institutions by allowing their business account holders to eliminate the need for multiple distributed capture applications and the related data silos. Without being tied to a single operating system or browser, the business benefits from a scalable omni-channel check capture platform that is deployable in the branch or in a remote location and on any device, including a tablet, iPad, PC or Mac.
3. Everyone talks about ‘big data.’ What are you seeing here as it relates to RDC?
Big data and data analytics are crucial, and a differentiating, powerful capability for FIs. As just mentioned, most talk about needing the capability but implementing a platform for full enterprise-wide transparency isn’t as widespread as you’d think. Data visualization – including the capture and analysis of both institutional and consumer data from all channels, not just remote - is instrumental to capture trends, patterns, and habits that affect profits and organizational performance. Being able to aggregate data from all acquisition channels is also important. Those banks and credit unions that do adopt these capabilities gain a consolidated view of trends and transaction data in a user-friendly dashboard, along with actionable business intelligence that speed decisions. Taking it a step further, being able to customize the view based on the employees’ roles enables even more efficiency – a branch manager may have a different dashboard than someone working with the digital platform.
4. Is in-branch banking in danger of becoming obsolete with the desire for self-service, especially today?
With the evolution of RDC technology, simple in-branch transactions were historically decreasing as visitors to the branch are particularly focused on higher-touch and more complex transactions. Despite this, the need for in-branch services still exists, for things like financial advice and specific topics that are preferred to be addressed face-to-face. Of course, today with covid-19, everything has changed temporarily, which reiterates the need to enable account holders with a consistent experience regardless of where they chose to transact, and a simple engagement that builds institutional trust through a feeling of support. This is where providing account holders with an integrated blend of full- and self- service options is key for sustainability and differentiation. Keeping the loyalty of customers or members by ensuring a consistent experience to drive engagement, while remaining flexible to fulfill dynamic, varying transactional needs today or in the future, is what will make one institution stand apart from another and sustain itself in today’s changing norm.
5. When it comes to fraud, how can FIs address the increased risk with the growing use of remote deposit?
Fraud is not going away, in fact, it’s increasing, and checks remain the most popular payment rail for their target. As I mentioned at the start of our interview, fraudsters follow the money so FIs need to be even stronger in their approach to protect themselves and their account holders when guards are down and many are still transacting from home. Our commitment to helping fight check fraud across all channels is emboldened with AI and machine learning tools, with customized, tailored solutions designed to be applied cross-channel and detect fraud in real-time at the point of presentment – remote or in-branch. Finding the balance between risk management, deposit limits and customer scoring models is what will help maintain a positive banking experience and still combat fraud for the bank or credit union.
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