Digital benchmarking for Swiss and Liechtenstein private banking

A new study provides insight into today's status of private banks' digitalisation initiatives.

Find out more about how you can become part of the study community.

February 2024, text: Simon Ruettimann, Prof. Dr. Anjeza Kadili, Dario Tam           4 min.

Benchmarking the digital transformation: e.foresight's study series in private banking

In order to provide an overview of the current status of the digitalisation of the customer interface in the Swiss and Liechtenstein private banking market, e.foresight (a Swisscom trend scout of the banking industry) launched a recurring benchmarking study. This was created in collaboration with the Haute école de gestion Genève (HEG) and the Institut Supérieur de Formation Bancaire (ISFB).

Future functionalities in private banking: a digital benchmark in Switzerland and Liechtenstein

The e.foresight Digital Private Banking Benchmarking Study analyses the current and future functionalities covered by the client interfaces  of private banking players operating in Switzerland and Liechtenstein. The relevant functionalities in e-banking, mobile banking, and advisor application (i.e., applications used by advisors for physical customer meetings) are analysed via a systematic questionnaire completed by participating banks. The survey includes both pureplay wealth managers and private banks, as well as universal banks operating in the private banking segment.

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The most important findings of the study: 

e.foresight digital private banking benchmarks 2023

With an average functionality coverage of 32% across all customer interaction channels, there is currently significant potential for further digital developments. While today’s digital customer interfaces in private banking primarily cover administrative features, their importance for core asset management services will increase. This particularly includes digital functions that support discretionary and advisory mandates. 

Medium and large universal banks are leading in terms of digital feature coverage today. They benefit from scalability effects resulting from more digital interaction models in their retail and mass affluent businesses. In contrast, medium and large asset managers have the highest number of planned functions (around 15%), although they currently only cover around 25% of functionalities on average. This market segment will therefore be the most dynamic in terms of client interface digitalization.

The most digitalised institutions are clearly moving towards a hybrid interaction model where most services can be accessed via digital channels. Other players will retain a ‘physical-first’ model while investing in new features to improve the customer experience in specific areas.

An additional survey within this study focusses on digital sustainability features in e-banking, advisor applications and purely internal (non-customer-facing) applications: Most of the sustainability features analysed are still limited to purely internal applications and therefore do not play a significant role at the customer interface yet. However, major investments are under way particularly from larger wealth managers over the next years, creating increased momentum for digital client interactions in the sustainability area. 

For private banks e.foresight offers up-to-date analyses, studies and consulting formats that provide strategically relevant insights into innovations in global and Swiss wealth management. Find out more on how to become a member.

e.foresight – the Swiss banking think tank

e.foresight from Swisscom identifies, monitors and analyses trends as well as behavioural and technological developments in the global financial sector and digital ecosystem. Through trend scouting and ongoing market research, we identify opportunities and risks earlier than others and derive concrete recommendations on the basis of these. Around 30 renowned banks in Switzerland and Liechtenstein currently rely on e.foresight’s trend scouts.

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