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CIO View: Looking to China's skipped generation

Ericson Chan | Dec. 9, 2013
China's new generation of youngsters will continue to drive adoption of new technologies and new channels across traditional sectors including banking and payments.

In addition to the same and next day delivery culture of convenience that has grown out of the availability of low cost delivery resources, Skipped Generation consumers expect even more instant gratification -- whether that be receiving a mobile coupon directly to their smartphones which can be used on the spot; completing a task online (for example, paying a bill or making a transaction) or near-immediate social network responses from companies to which they are taking their experience.

The inevitable next level of demand will see an increased level of personalisation in consumers' interactions with a service or product provider -- this could come in the form of a location triggered push notification coupon based on the users' spending patterns, unique design of a product or personalisation of a service.

In actual fact, the data and technology to affect a high level of personalisation is already widely available. Big data can provide the what, and smartphone technology can provide the delivery mechanism.

Rates of adoption and perceptions towards security can be in fact what hinders wider usage of newer personalised products and services. The preferences of the Skipped Generation are important to monitor and understand, because of all peer groups, this generation will be the first to adopt new trends.

Online to offline experience
As the retail sector has embraced this new model to create a new retail experience, the online to offline fulfilment has become a key preference of the Skipped Generation. There is a natural expectation that the online to offline experience will be unified. Customers expect to be treated in the same manner regardless of whether they transact online or offline. A request can be triggered online and be seamlessly completed in a retail outlet.

What Standard Chartered is doing in this space
With the Skipped Generation in mind, in the last few years, we have committed to developing our mobile banking capabilities.

Mobile is revolutionising the way China and the world banks, and it is key to commanding customer relationships. Ubiquitous connectivity, networked devices, social media, NFC and mobile payments are some of the powerful forces shaping the banking eco-system today -- and these capabilities are what our Skipped Generation customers expect from their bank.

Some initiatives we have launched in China include Breeze -- Standard Chartered's suite of banking and lifestyle apps, including Breeze Banking, Breeze Home, Breeze Good Life and Breeze Trade, these provide a differentiated mobile banking solution to customers. Our customers can bank with us anytime and anywhere. We design our solutions to be fully integrated with our customer lifestyle. Even the background of our mobile apps alter according to the time of day. This is very much our way of catering to the instant gratification and personalisation expectations of the increasingly affluent Skipped Generation. As at the end of 2012, about 1.2 million users had downloaded Breeze.


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