Victoria Omelchenko, CEO of the Ukrainian IT company Banza, recently presented her Client Ecosystems: The Art of Integration report at the Financial and Digital Ecosystems for SMEs: Update 2020 forum. According to the report, it is important that financial institutions become partners to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and not just lenders, ultimately helping them grow and become better at their business. To do this, financial institutions need to keep in mind 6 key expectations SMEs have:
- To the greatest extent possible, everything should be online. Entrepreneurs do not have the time or desire to do things the “old-fashioned” way, unless absolutely necessary.
- Everything should be smartphone accessible. If you can do it online, you should be able to do it from a smartphone in one application that is bug-free.
- Paper is a “no-no”. Electronic document management is a must.
- Communications should be via instant messenger systems. Chatbots offer a great solution for this.
- They need business support. You should go beyond offering products and offer them ways to make their business better, e.g. business development trainings.
- Everything needs to be light. Interfaces, reporting, analytics, etc. all need to be light and easy to control.
To meet these expectations, financial institutions need to work to minimize manual work, automate processes, introduce electronic document management, provide user-friendly interfaces, process reports quickly and link all products and services into one system.
It is more important now than ever before that financial institutions proactively work to meet the real-world needs of businesses, especially SMEs. The creation of ecosystems for them will greatly help in the economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and launch the world into a bright new future.