How can the cloud take instant card issuance to the next level?

Last updated: 01 June 2021

Today, consumers expect financial service providers to offer the perfect mix of physical and digital services to immediately meet their needs. And with speed and user experience remaining at the top of the agenda, these providers are constantly looking to adapt their card issuance offering to meet consumer expectations by turning to different forms of technology, with the cloud being one of them.

The use of cloud platforming in business is nothing new. However, financial service providers can leverage the technology further by using cloud infrastructure to unify what were once separate financial services under one roof.

The result – the potential for a revolutionised strategy where instant card issuance is not an isolated in-branch service but an integrated pillar of a wider digital banking strategy.

But how exactly can the cloud take instant card issuance to the next level?

Unifying digital and physical issuance under one roof

The true magic of deploying cloud platforming is that it enables banks to unify digital banking, payment, and issuance operations under a single architecture. This means that instant issuance becomes the key part of a much wider card issuance strategy, marrying all digital and physical channels into one holistic offering. Thanks to this technology, instant issuance at the branch can now deliver the same level of instantaneous services that is now expected from digital channels.

Simply said, this means that customers will benefit from getting a new payment card on the spot at the physical branch, which is in line with increasing customer expectations of getting immediate access to the services they need. Considering the diversity in consumer preferences when it comes to banking, the ability to effortlessly manage different services under one structure is crucial.

Putting the customer in charge

In a study of US consumers, researchers found that 14.2 million Americans (6% of U.S. adults with a checking account), consider a digital bank to be their primary bank, marking a 67% increase from January 2020.

To accommodate this demand for decentralised, digitised banking, banks can use cloud platforming to put consumers in full control of their banking via the bank’s mobile app. Through the mobile app, consumers are given the keys to a variety of banking services, such as choosing the method in which a new card is issued, changing their PIN remotely, or assigning specific cards to particular eCommerce websites.

As a result, banking becomes an ultra-personalised experience for the consumer, replacing the ‘one-size-fits-all’ range of services previously offered by providers.

But what does this mean for in-branch services?

While it may seem that physical bank branches are a dying breed, the numbers suggest that this is far from the truth. Last year, reports found that more than 75% of consumers still believe that bank branches matter, with at least 70% saying they had visited a bank branch at least once in the past month.

Even with a cloud-based operating system in place, physical branches still provide crucial issuance services which complement the digital services that banks offer. From the pre-personalisation of cards to the enhanced security provided by ribbon masking technology during the printing process, physical branches still offer immense value to consumers who are more ‘traditionally-minded’ when it comes to card issuance. Furthermore, thanks to Instant Issuance, physical cards can be issued on the spot in the branch – just like digital cards are issued immediately via the mobile banking app.

Instead of becoming an obsolete feature of a bygone era, physical branches create a crucial channel which can be managed via their unified cloud operating system.

Additional benefits of cloud computing for banks

Aside from the benefits associated with instant card issuance, cloud platforming has other perks that can help banks provide a customer-centric and efficient portfolio of services:

  • Scalable solutions – A core benefit of cloud computing is that it can be adapted to fit the size of any business. Particularly for smaller institutions, the thought of wasting resources on a solution which is far too big for the demand of their customer base is troubling to say the least. However, by running a cloud-based model, administrators can increase or decrease the power needed to operate their systems with just a few clicks, a crucial feature if demand were to waver or dramatically increase at any given time.
  • Quick and easy integration – Integrating new operating systems and technologies into any business can be complex and time-consuming. However, if a cloud-based infrastructure is implemented, the process can be cost effective and relatively simple. With no need for additional hardware onsite, financial service providers can seamlessly and quickly integrate a cloud platform with little to no disruption to their daily services.

As banks continue into the digital first age of financial services, the lofty standards of convenience and instantaneity will continue to top the agenda for consumers. However, with the help of technologies such as cloud computing, banks can continue to innovate and adapt to consumer demand when it comes to their personal banking preferences.

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