How Wells Fargo’s financial management app leveraged agile development
FINANCIAL institutions have quickly learned that innovative efforts are not only highly critical in staying ahead of peers and fintech disruptors, but they are also a fundamental component in ensuring customers’ needs are met.
It all starts by collecting data, information, and feedback on what customers expect and analyzing financial trends that are highly marketable.
From there, ideas for new products and services are born and development plans are structured. Sadly, there are many cases where ideas remain as ideas and they do not go into production, but that is not the case with Wells Fargo.
Digital players in the industry have recognized that the IUS-based company is one of the best entities in driving innovative ideas into actual production with tangible results – and its Head of Digital Payments Ben Soccorsy can attest to that.
Wells Fargo has developed a financial management app called the ‘Control Tower‘ to help customers govern their finances in a more strategic manner through digital means.
The establishment launched the service within months after the announcement was made. That feat alone has enabled it to seize growing digital market opportunities and delight customers.
Adopting agile development methods is fundamental in making this possible. The app was developed to deliver financial services in incremental stages within a boxed period instead of announcing ideas and then waiting for a long time to deliver the product in one shot.
In Walls Fargo’s case, Soccorsy remarked that “If the long term vision is critical, then you will have the chance through agile to iterate toward it, but it takes a delicate balance of how much to tackle right out of the gate.”
It was indeed an effective method as it allows continuous improvement to be made, goal-driven functions to be delivered, and product maturity to be achieved.
“One of the key aspects of agile is getting full leverage out of what you have and integrating with existing concepts and reformulating in a way that adds value,” explained Soccorsy.
True enough, the method allowed new services and products to be delivered quickly to customers as they adapt to the digital age. Speed is an important factor in driving agile-based innovative processes.
In developing the Control Tower, there were four key types of team members that were tied-in from the very start of the project to work in an agile manner. These team members included enterprise associates, tech talents, line of business heads, and a designer.
The financial management app empowers customers to strategically manage their finances by offering capabilities to turn Wells Fargo cards on or off. This feature would help in cases where customers lose their cards or to limit international transactions.
Additionally, customers can control the amount of data they share with third-party dealers and access insights into their recurring payments.
Customers can be reminded of renewals, end-of-trial notices, increased fees and so on. According to the Head of Digital Payments, “It’s extremely valuable for customers who have subscriptions they have a hard time tracking and it can be useful when a card expires or you lose it.”
Wells Fargo’s progressive approach reflects how important it is to deliver valuable and innovative services or products within a short but reasonable amount of time to ensure that business opportunities are attained and customers are retained.
Of course, that goes without saying that quality must be ingrained in each process so that the innovations that are pushed forward are bankable, marketable, and reliable.