Digital Workers Help UK Bank Quickly Extend Overdraft Protections
A UK bank has been supporting British citizens for centuries. They know that COVID-19 has affected all of their customers, but in different ways. The bank continues to look for new ways to lend a hand. A strong and longstanding intelligent automation program has allowed them to act quickly to help customers when new ideas arise.
The economic effects of COVID-19 have created widespread financial stress. The bank wanted to help alleviate that stress for customers. Early in the pandemic, it extended £500 of interest and fee-free overdraft protection to each of its customers for three months. As the pandemic wore on, the bank knew that some customers would need the protection for longer than three months.
So, vulnerable customers who had taken advantage of the overdraft coverage the first time around were offered the opportunity to have their overdraft extended for another three months. An overdraft free of interest and charges is an attractive offer and the bank expected a high volume of requests for extensions. They wanted to ensure that they could answer customer requests quickly and provide an online option.
In the first week the bank received over 20,000 requests. To help handle this demand, customers were directed to an online form. A team of Blue Prism intelligent digital workers received the form and performed validation checks and selected the correct tariff code based on the account type. That information was collated and sent to an IT team to perform a bulk batch update to internal systems each night.
Once the initial crush of applications had subsided, the bank taught the digital workers to handle a few more steps in the process, so that employees only rarely needed to get involved. Digital workers now go into the user interface, check an email address, read the application, perform validation checks and approve or deny each request. Last, they make necessary changes to the customer’s account and send a confirmation email.
Instead of receiving thousands of overdraft request phone calls, employees have been able to focus on more complex work and value-added customer interactions. And, the digital workers scale easily depending on volume so staffing requirements have remained steady.