HSBC: Digitalisation a “permanent feature” post COVID-19

THE COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the banking industry into adapting digitalisation as the “new normal”.

HSBC Malaysia said whatever changes the bank has adopted due to the pandemic may become a permanent feature, adding customer behaviour had also been gravitating towards the digital platform over the years.

“Here is what banking may look like post COVID-19. More banking transactions will be completed on the digital platform.

“These include routine activities such as checking balances, payments and transfers, paying a bill and even credit card applications.

“Many of these activities are habitual, which are unlikely to change. There will be more people who will bank via digital channels and that behaviour is likely to stay,” said HSBC Malaysia Head of Wealth and Personal Banking Tara Latini, in a statement.

In tandem with the changes, Latini said HSBC has launched many digital initiatives such as the 24/7 digital account opening with biometrics capability, that allows customers to choose their preferred time to open an account, while adhering to social distancing rules.

“Our effort has been recognised by the Malaysia Technology Excellence Awards 2020 as our digital innovations continue to provide a more convenient banking experience to our customers even with challenges brought by the pandemic,” she said.

Latini shared some predictions on how banking will look like post-Covid-19, which are:


  • More banking transactions will be completed via digital channels
  • Customers will still go to branches for important moments like establishing wealth plans, bereavement, sending children overseas for studies and buying a home
  • Bank branches will become more like service lounges
  • Regulatory collaboration on digitisation will accelerate
  • Established banks will become more like challenger banks


Latini added, “While some parts of service industries like banking will change, the human element will persist – particularly where complexity is involved and reassurance is needed.”

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