Digital, Data and the New Payments Landscape

Nov  10 
Chris Thompson  Senior Writer, Fiserv 

Intuitive, proactive experiences are driving the accelerated pace of change

People's financial services expectations are shifting. Instead of basic transactional interactions, consumers are more often focused on the bigger things they're trying to accomplish, such as saving for college or a new home. That's when financial institutions find themselves at the intersection of data and the consumer experience.

In a recent conversation, Byron Vielehr, chief digital and data officer at Fiserv, discussed how turning data into proactive experiences is just one of a broad range of rapid changes across the financial services spectrum. Beyond making data actionable and insightful, financial services are evolving toward: machine learning that simplifies tasks; artificial intelligence that enhances the digital experience; a payments ecosystem that is shifting to real time; and cryptocurrency that is giving rise to stablecoins.

Stablecoins, which are a type of cryptocurrency whose value is tied to assets such as the U.S. dollar, are playing an increasingly significant role in real-time money movement. Vielehr said the market is seeing hundreds of billions of dollars in stablecoins moving around each quarter. The reasons, he said, are speed and certainty because wires move slower and ACHs are batched.

The financial services market will see the digital version of most large currencies in the near future, he said.

"This pivot to real-time payments is going to be profound, and it's going to move quite quickly," Vielehr said. "When we look back 10 years from now, we're going to see some players were prepared for it, while other players had bet that it was going to change a lot more slowly. In the world of digital, people are getting so accustomed to things happening instantly that they're not going to accept slow payment processes."

Preparing for the future of digital, data and cryptocurrencies means focusing on relationships, insights and consumer needs. People are sharing their expectations with their banks and credit unions every day in multiple ways. Listening to consumers and proactively responding will position financial institutions for whatever the future holds.