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The Hub March 2017

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Great Expectations: the story of today’s consumer

On 28 and 30 March 2017 we held The Hub in Wellington and Auckland to discuss: The age of the empowered customer – are we meeting their expectations? Our speakers presented research on consumer needs and described how firms are trying to meet them.

The current payments environment

Steve Wiggins, our Chief Executive, opened The Hub by charting the recent evolution of the payments sector, from an industry focussed on stability to one embracing innovative and customer-orientated fintech. New Zealand is well-placed in this new payments landscape, and Payments NZ is playing a key role in helping the industry shape its own destiny.

Steve also presented some hot off the press results from a consumer survey recently commissioned by Payments NZ and conducted by Ipsos. The results showed consumers of all ages continue to demand certainty from their payments solutions. The survey gathered opinions on a wide range of payments options, from cheques – which people mostly use only when other payments methods aren’t available – to biometrics, whose use remains limited despite media hype. We’ll provide more details from the survey soon.

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See Steve's full presentation here:  pdf.png The evolving payments landscape


What do consumers expect?

Jonathan Dodd, Research Director at Ipsos, was our first guest speaker. He emphasised that consumers are happiest when things are easier, faster and cheaper than before. If that isn’t challenging enough, he warned that the definition of a satisfied consumer varies across cultures, and that today’s proliferation of product and service options provides more opportunities for dissatisfaction. A useful nugget from follow-up questions was his suggestion that companies gather feedback from customer-facing staff to get an initial view of consumer preferences. Another was that consumers will jerry-rig innovative solutions when faced with problems that companies haven’t yet solved.

See Jonathan's full presentation here:  pdf.png What consumers really want and why they expect so much

Paul Roberts, Financial Services Leader and Partner at EY, provided some colour to these concepts with the results of the EY Consumer Banking Survey. Data from New Zealand is available for the first time, with 2,000 Kiwis questioned on banks’ relevance. He laid down some stark challenges to traditional financial service providers: less than half of people trust banks to keep their money safe, non-bank organisations look set to play a key role in providing financial services, and two-thirds of consumers don’t see themselves as financially savvy.

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See Paul's full presentation here:  pdf.png EY consumer banking survey results


Power to the people

Credit Simple is empowering customers by giving them easy access to their credit rating information to help them make informed decisions. Hazel Phillips told us about their free solution for Kiwis (and Aussies) who want to view their credit score instantly online. They get to see how financial institutions perceive them, and are offered financial products that match their profiles. Hazel was also kind enough to share her own credit score! Find out how to check yours here: www.creditsimple.co.nz

The event closed with a presentation by representatives of the Kiwibank Fintech Accelerator, powered by Lightning Lab. In Wellington this was led by Rosie Wall, the Accelerator’s Programme Manager, while in Auckland the presenter was Rick Brown, mentor-in-residence at Lightning Lab. Rosie and Rick described some fintech startups hoping to meet the needs of tomorrow’s consumers. Wicket, for example, wants to help underinsured New Zealand businesses get cover, Liberac wants to ease remittance payments using blockchain, and Sharesies wants to provide a tool for budding Kiwi investors. These startups aim to put empowering fintech in the hands of consumers, and are being provided with advice, funding and publicity to help them achieve this.

Thanks to all the speakers who made this a superbly insightful event, and to all those who attended. If you’re not already on our mailing list and would like to be invited to the next edition of The Hub, please fill out our registration form.

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