UK financial services organisations are struggling to encourage their customers to go paperless, with the majority of customers still opting to receive communication and documentation via the traditional paper format. A study by EY found that only 28% of customers in the UK are choosing to go paperless which means that over 5 billion paper documents were sent out in the last year.
Changes to regulation in the industry are a key reason as to why so much documentation is still being sent out. New rules and policies regarding fees and charges etc., mean that customers believe they have a need for physical, paper evidence. Regulation, and customer demand, along with the hindrance of legacy systems, are key reasons as to why the industry is failing to go paperless.
It seems that more should be done around communication with customers, encouraging them away from the desire/need to have a physical record, which is likely due to either habit or inertia. Anita Kimber, head of digital, UK financial services at EY says that 'firms can do a lot more to help customers in this move to digital. It's not just about putting the same pdf document on an app, it's about re-imagining content and designing information which is more engaging for customers.' As ever, solving the issue of how to communicate better with customers is clearly a key factor in the financial services industry reducing the amount of paper being used, and instead moving towards a digital format being the standard way of communicating.