Answer and PrinSIX are two Leeds digital firms that came together to shake up the financial services sector and enable greater financial inclusion through a new fintech platform.
Fintech company PrinSIX was founded to help lenders give consumers simple, intuitive digital journeys within a highly complex regulatory environment. It helps lenders make credit more accessible and fairer, while supporting financial inclusion.
PrinSIX partnered with Answer to develop the customer interface and digital platform. The platform challenges today’s approach of hardcoded, one size fits all applications. Analytically driven dynamic journeys mean that CX is optimised for each customer in real-time.
Julian Graham-Rack, CEO at PrinSIX Technologies, said: "The application process for a loan hasn't changed in 50 years. You fill out a form and submit it. We believed that things could be better and set out to use the latest technology to improve both the borrowers and lenders' experience.
"The paradigm shift is that instead of the journey driving the analytics, the analytics drives the journey. Decisioning orchestrates the journey to ask everything that needs to be asked, but nothing that doesn’t, either through customer interaction or through third-party data sources.
“We looked for a technology partner who understood how to deliver real innovation, on the latest technology, with confidence. We needed a partner who shared our vision of putting the customer experience first. That partner was Answer Digital.”
The platform will make it easier for people to apply for loans and significantly reduce application abandonment. It will help to reduce marketing spend while increasing operational efficiencies by reducing the number of applicants falling out of the process and pressure on contact centres.
Alex Poyser, a user experience designer at Answer, said: "How many times have we all been faced with lengthy and daunting online applications forms? Through user-centred design, we put the customer experience at the heart of the development process to create an easy and inclusive process. We created a digital conversation that uses advanced analytics to draw on the relevant information to make applications quick and painless."
A personalised experience.
Answer worked with PrinSIX to create a personalised experience that is responsive to each applicant. The journey controller works using a customised and fluid user experience that learns and adapts to the person using it. It was essential to create a personal and human interaction using the latest technology.
With a truly personalised customer journey, the team at Answer removed the long-form experience most of us are used to when it comes to finances and replaces it with a chat-style format. The conversational experience is more accessible and engaging for all.
Dynamic journeys don't lend themselves to being easy to plot, track and demonstrate. A lot goes on behind the scenes in terms of technology, but the team at Answer didn't want this to be the case for the customer. Taking a complex system and distilling it down to make it as usable for the customer as possible was the biggest challenge.
The successful outcome turned a loan application process into what feels like a human conversation while still being usable with inflexible parts of any application process, such as validation.
What was the development process?
Due to the challenges of Covid-19 and lockdown, the initial whiteboarding exercise was completed on Miro, which proved hugely valuable when working remotely. Several variations in design were explored, all with the drive to keep the 'form' conversational.
A WhatsApp feel was adopted early in the development process to ensure it felt familiar to users and was intuitive to use. However, fitting the detailed questions into what feels like a messaging app was challenging, especially on mobile.
One of the trickiest parts of the project was bringing the idea to life. Answer supported PrinSIX in the creation of the platform and supported the presentation of the proposition to customers.
To do this, Adobe After Effects was used to create an animation of both what the user sees and a visualisation of how the decision engine works in the background.
A clickable prototype was created with Invision for both mobile and desktop to show how customers can interact, edit, and submit their loan requests.
Overall the challenging development process was hugely rewarding for everyone involved. It was a highly collaborative process despite the hurdles of remote working. The outcome will make a big difference to lenders and borrowers alike.
To learn more about PrinSIX, visit https://prinsix.com/