A lot has changed over the last year, not least of all the behavior of consumers in pretty much any industry you can think of.
In the consumer finance industry, the COVID-19 pandemic hit fast forward on a gradual path toward more virtual offerings. It’s also meant that the banks have been hiring technologists — and will continue to hire them for the foreseeable future.
WSFS, JPMorgan Chase and M&T Bank have all been hiring in Delaware through the pandemic. If you’re considering taking the leap into tech, either out of school or as a career pivot, keep in mind that banks are now tech companies, and they’re on the lookout for innovators.
“Typically folks in the trade, there is some hesitation when they think about financial services,” said Aarthi Murali, M&T’s chief customer experience officer. “These are creative roles, with a lot of challenge to the norms. We’re looking for an extremely high degree of innovation.”
M&T is currently looking for UX designers, service designers, customer analysts and experience engineers, with positions available at all level, from junior to senior.
The challenges consumer banks are facing are about evolving with their customers, while still offering the level of human-to-human customer service most people aren’t willing to give up, even if they like the convenience of doing small tasks like depositing checks by app.
The pandemic, which hit less than two months after Murali started with M&T, has impacted banking in multiple ways, from PPP loans to customer anxiety.
“It’s an opportunity to help our customers who are struggling and who are so stressed,” Murali said. “Customer behavior changed significantly. Some was by preference and by choice, some was thrust on them. There were those who didn’t want to take the risk to come in to a retail location, and then some others who learned some new behaviors and said, ‘Hey, this is great.'”
Before the pandemic, M&T was already looking for ways to innovate their services in order to balance modern, often virtual, technology with more hands-on customer service. It’s incorporating this balance into the roles it’s hiring for.
“When we think about design, it’s really about empathy-based, human-centered design,” she said. “These are all roles that are human centered, completely rooted in customer and community needs, working ‘outside in’ to build and deliver what our communities want.”
Murali sees this trend as playing a big part in the post-pandemic “experience economy.”
“A lot of companies, even outside of financial services, are offering experiences while making it personal,” she said. “We know our customers and community so well and what we want to do now is offer the right experiences.”
Even when social distancing isn’t mandated, those experiences will include things like the option for Zoom meetings with financial advisors and in-person banking by appointment, as well as services offered through the bank’s ever-evolving technology platforms.
Check out M&T’s current open roles here. Murali said new positions will be added throughout the year.-30-