When was the last time you wrote a personal check? Or deposited one with a teller in a bank?
Today you can bank without setting one foot outside your house. Using your smartphone, you can deposit your checks, transfer your money, and pay your bills without touching a piece of paper or signing any form. And I have to admit: I love it! I can sit at my desk, take out my cell phone, snap a couple of pictures, and “poof,” my check is deposited.
And just to think, 30 years ago, my friend had to show me how to use the ATM when it first came out. I mean, before that, we had to cash our paychecks inside the bank with everyone else. Oh, the lines! The forms! The hassle! Those days are long gone now.
And it’s not just banking either.
I had a bit of surprise last weekend when I needed to refill a prescription while I was traveling. My insurance company had just changed, and I didn’t think about updating that information with CVS. Why would I? Like most people, I have my prescription on auto-refill.
So, when I got a text from CVS telling me that I needed to update my insurance information before they would refill my prescription, I was trying to figure out how I was going to get to the pharmacy while it was open. But then I noticed a link next to my text, “Click to update your information.”
And to my surprise, a screen similar to my banking app showed up.Kind of like this but for my insurance card:
Wouldn’t you know it? Within an hour, I got a text that my information was accepted and my prescription was available for pickup.
As my mom Frieda always says, “Technology is just amazing.”
What’s more amazing is how companies are using technology to provide solutions for their customers, bettering their experience and retaining their loyalty. Taking a look at my own industry, Ahold USA banners (Stop & Shop and Giant) have SCAN IT! Now a mobile feature, this tool allows shoppers to scan their items, using their smartphones, for a self-serve checkout. The store recently announced it is upgrading its Wi-Fi connectivity for an even better customer experience. This will make the customer app run faster and also allow store associates to help customers with ordering and price checking.
For some, business technology will be the ultimate disruptor. And for others, it will create opportunities. We, as shoppers, totally love the seamless transactions! But what can we do as a business to provide that to our clients?
Back in the office, I shared the story of updating my insurance information via my cell phone with my colleague Mark. He said that that he reported his car mileage to the insurance company the same way—taking a photo of his dashboard and uploading it to his State Farm app. Done.
Yes, technology is amazing!