SunGard Launches New Bank Readiness Index

SunGard Launches New Bank Readiness Index

Zurich – New research undertaken by Celent on behalf of SunGard, has found that banks in some of the world’s fastest-growing emerging markets are struggling to keep up with changing customer expectations, particularly in multi-channel areas such as social media and mobility.

The research, which consisted of two surveys* of more than 1,000 consumers and 100 banks in eight countries across the Middle East and Southeast Asia, investigated how prepared banks are to respond to the needs of their retail customers. Building on the research, Celent has developed the Bank Readiness Index (BRI) on behalf of SunGard, an online tool to help banks benchmark their ability to cater to customer expectations. The SunGard BRI uses 17 parameters and aggregates banks’ capabilities across four metrics, including multi-channel and customer metrics.

Key findings of the research revealed:
Banks lag customer demand for a multichannel experience: Most consumers are prolific online and mobile users yet many of the surveyed banks do not offer a fully integrated multi-channel experience. Only 34% of Southeast Asian banks and 17% of Middle Eastern banks currently have tablet offerings and most mobile banking offerings are still basic. While 63% of banks in Asia are now offering native apps (i.e. built for Android or iPhone) only 25% are doing so in the Middle East.

Less than 40% of banks offer personalized landing pages: While 88% of banks surveyed offer online bill payment and 69% P2P payment capability, just 39% offer personalized landing pages or the ability for users to tailor content. Of the banks surveyed, only 31% integrate with shopping or discount programs and even fewer (27%) offer personal financial management capability online.

Consumers are talking on Facebook, but banks are not “listening”: 90% of consumers surveyed use Facebook at least weekly, with approximately half of respondents confirming they would use it to share banking experiences. While 76% of banks agree that innovation in mobility and digital technology is a key opportunity to personalize offerings only 21% have a fully developed social media strategy and just 13% believe they are sing social media to its fullest potential. Only 38% monitor social media.

Consumer enthusiasm towards their bank is modest at best: Less than 50% of respondents in the Middle East felt their bank understands their needs well, with just over half agreeing with this statement in Asia. Barely half of consumers perceived their bank to be a technology innovator. Just 28% of bank respondents have a 360 degree customer view across products and delivery channels. Customer analytics and relationship pricing are similarly lacking.

Commenting on the research, Bob Meara, senior analyst, Celent, said, “Consumers in emerging markets feel that banks are not doing enough to understand their needs. While consumer trust is evident, banks need to capitalize on this opportunity to get a better handle on changing customer habits and engagement strategies in order to help maintain customer loyalty in the future”.

Dean Young, vice president of product management for SunGard’s banking business, said, “Increasingly, online channels present consumers with more freedom to ‘shop around’. Banks need the ability to understand their customers’ needs, in order to create a better user experience, which in turn will help to capitalize on cross-sell opportunities, build customer loyalty and improve profitability. The SunGard Bank Readiness Index will help banks in emerging markets gain a true picture of just how ready and capable they are to meet customer demands and develop offerings to meet their customers’ needs and preferences.”

The Bank Readiness Index research was undertaken in March – April 2012. The study is based on two surveys, a survey of 102 banks undertaken by Celent, and a survey of 1,073 consumers, undertaken by Loudhouse Research. Analysis of the research findings was then undertaken by Celent. The surveys cover the following 8 countries:

• Southeast Asia: Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand
• Middle East: Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates

About SunGard’s Ambit
SunGard’s Ambit is a banking solution suite for retail, commercial and private banks. It provides banking professionals with solutions that support front-, middle- and back-office operations, as well as solutions for financial management, risk and performance. Ambit helps banks retain and acquire customers, improve staff efficiency and effectively measure and allocate their capital. For more information, visit

About SunGard
SunGard is one of the world’s leading software and technology services companies. SunGard has more than 17,000 employees and serves approximately 25,000 customers in more than 70 countries. SunGard provides software and processing solutions for financial services, education and the public sector. SunGard also provides disaster recovery services, managed IT services, information availability consulting services and business continuity management software. With annual revenue of about $4.5 billion, SunGard is the largest privately held software and services company and was ranked 480 on the Fortune 500. Look for us wherever the mission is critical.

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