Transforming Customer Onboarding in Banking with Automation

The banking market is more competitive than ever, with fintech startups offering intuitive ways to delight customers, including super-slick customer onboarding using process automation.

The pressure is on for incumbents to keep up and offer the same experience. They can lure customers in with their brand reputation, but they need to live up to these reputations with an impressive customer onboarding experience. Afterall, this sets the tone for the rest of the customer journey.

Fail to impress and customers will abandon the process and take their custom elsewhere. In fact, research by Visa found that if the digital onboarding process takes longer than 20 minutes, 70% of customers abandon their attempt to open an account.


Pain points in the onboarding process 

Processing applications requires handling lots of information: data capture when customers complete application forms, data validation to confirm the customer has given the correct information, passing the data between departments, and then inputting information into banking systems. Doing all this manually takes time and leaves room for error.

The customer onboarding process can be hindered by:

- Taking too long to gather and process data

- Incomplete or inaccurate data 

- Security checks that can be inaccurate or take too long 

- Lack of effective communication between the bank and the customer 

- Disconnected systems slowing the process and leaving it open to errors


How automation can transform the banking onboarding process:  

Digital data collection

One of the most vital steps in the customer onboarding process is gathering customer information and data. They will offer up the majority of required information themselves when applying for a product with your bank. Most customers prefer to submit digital forms now, which eliminates the need for manual data entry and eliminates the risk of errors creeping in when data is transferred, or even worse, losing physical documents. Automation platforms can validate data on digital forms in real-time, ensuring accuracy and completeness. This can trigger prompts if the customer needs to provide additional information.

Automation platforms can also collect data from multiple sources through APIs and data feeds, so you can check if the customer already has any information held with you.

Identity verification and KYC

It’s of the utmost importance for banks to carry out Know Your Customer (KYC) and compliance checks during the onboarding process. You need to avoid fraudulent activity happening on your watch by ensuring that customers are who they say they are. Gathering and submitting the necessary documents can cumbersome.  

Automation platforms can integrate with intelligent technologies such as AI algorithms and machine learning, and external databases to automatically verify customer information and check their credit history. By automating identity verification, banks can improve the accuracy, efficiency, and speed of the onboarding process while complying with regulatory requirements.

Data consistency and integration

An automation platform provides an ideal foundation for integrating the customer onboarding process with your legacy systems and existing applications. Core banking systems, CRM systems and other internal databases can all be integrated to facilitate data transfer, eliminating the need for manual data re-entry across multiple systems or having to pass the data between teams and systems.

Integrating systems abolish a siloed approach to working and provide data consistency and integrity, with automated connections reducing the risk of errors caused by data duplication or mistakes made when entering or rekeying information.



Old Mutual Bank had 11 disconnected systems with no single view of the customer. This created an unnecessarily long onboarding process as staff relied on individually coded variables to approve the customer data. But by using Bizagi to introduce orchestrate processes through a simplified data model, they reduced their customer onboarding time ten-fold.


Communication and Notifications

Customers value being kept up-to-date on the progress of their onboarding journey. Whether it’s letting them know the status of their application, if there is incomplete information that they need to provide, or letting them know the next steps; all these updates help to improve the customer experience by giving them peace of mind that things are progressing.

These updates can be automated as when a check point is reached in the process, the automation platform can trigger updates to be sent out via emails, texts or app push notifications to customers. This eliminates the need for manual follow-up emails or calls and is a far more efficient way of keep customers up-to-date.

Personalized Customer Experiences 

Personalized features, such as personalized greetings and addressing the customer by their name in communications helps to enhance the customer experience and make them feel like an individual. Customers can choose how they would like to receive information; some may prefer emails over app notifications. You can even personalize assistance and support through live chat or personalized onboarding managers. By leveraging customer data and automation platforms, banks can tailor the onboarding journey to each individual customer.

Personalization can provide mutual benefits to both the bank and the customer as automation platforms can use data to determine personalized products and services to offer the customer based on the information, they provide in their onboarding form.

Process planning, orchestration and agility

Process automation is based on workflows which are then automated to make tasks more efficient and offers the opportunity to streamline processes end-to-end. Using a process automation platform allows banks to design and automate the workflow of tasks in the onboarding process precisely as you want. This ensures that the right tasks are assigned to the appropriate individuals or departments, reducing bottlenecks and improving overall efficiency.

The ability to amend workflows with changes that are immediately reflected in the process also provides the agility to react to market changes or updates to regulations.

Automation platforms facilitate the orchestration of workflows involved in customer onboarding. Banks can design and automate the flow of tasks, approvals, and notifications required to complete the onboarding process, tailoring it to their precise needs.


Transform your operations with a low-code automation platform

Automating the customer onboarding process accelerates the application process by minimizing manual interventions and eliminating bottlenecks and connecting systems to enable customers to open accounts more quickly.

If would like to learn more about how automation can accelerate your bank’s transformation efforts, download our free eBook, The Essential Guide to Modernizing Banking Operations.

In addition to insight on how to offer innovative employee experiences, you will also learn how to: 

- Create frictionless customer experiences

- Respond to regulatory pressures

- Bridge gaps in your system with automation