Millennials most likely to embrace Open Banking

Millennials are the generation most likely to embrace new technologies such as Open Banking but they also hanker after the human touch when it comes to managing their finances, according to new research.

A survey of 1,000 adults conducted by Altus, a UK-based financial services consultancy, suggested that over half (53 per cent) of 25-34 year olds would be happy to allow a web-based service to review and manage their personal finances, compared to 35-44 year olds (51 per cent), 45-54 year olds (47 per cent) and the over 55s (38 per cent).

The survey also found that younger users are much more open to the idea of an online service that aggregates all of their financial data such as balance, savings, pensions, loans, and mortgages in one place, with 41 per cent of 25-34 year olds saying they would consider this option.

This, the consulting firm suggests, indicates that millennials would be more amenable than other age groups to customer propositions being opened up by Open Banking and financial data sharing.

By contrast, just 29 per cent of those aged 55 or over said they would be comfortable seeing a combined picture of their finances as part of one service.

However, while millennials were also the age group who felt most comfortable using online personal finance services, 85 per cent said they would expect this to include the option of speaking to a person, either through a webchat or over the phone as they were making the decision to invest in a new product.

This need for human interaction was less widely felt amongst older age groups, with 81 per cent of 35-44 year olds saying they expected the same, compared with 73 per cent of 45-54 year olds and 79 per cent of the over 55s.

Simon Bussy, domain director of wealth at Altus Consulting, said: “It’s interesting to see that, whilst the younger generation is open to managing their personal finances online, they are more likely to expect, and want, a human interaction as part of this offering. We still live in a world where many people still like the reassurance of speaking to a human during the decision-making process, and I don’t expect that to change any time soon.”

Earlier this year, a study by Accenture found that seven in 10 consumers wanted the ability to raise a complaint with a human adviser as part of their banking services and two thirds said they would like the ability to open an account in person.

The study also suggested that the proliferation of banks moving towards digital-only services could risk alienating customers of all ages.

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