Years ago, banks used little technology when providing services to customers. However, as time passed and new advancements emerged, banking quickly became overrun by electronic features, making the entire experience extremely impersonal. You no longer had to go to the bank at all or speak to a representative, as everything could be done though a computer. These days, the times are changing again, as many companies are striving to use technology to add a more human touch back into their services. Here’s a few ways banks are using technology to improve human interaction.

Wi-Fi Calling

In the past, it was often hard for banks to get in touch with their clients. Many people lived in remote areas where there was no cell phone service, making it impossible for them to get connected. However, with the new adoption of Wi-Fi calling, these previously unreachable people are now just a simple phone call away.

Wi-Fi calling from a provider like T-Mobile works by using a person’s Wi-Fi connection to send and receive calls. This means that as long as you are on a Wi-Fi network, you’ll be able to talk with your bank about any account issues that arise. This is far better than looking up information yourself on the bank’s website.

Social Media

Image via Flickr by Jason A. Howie

Nearly everyone is on social media these days, such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Many banks have started to take advantage of these sites, creating accounts and using them to interact with followers. While it isn’t quite as meaningful of a connection as a one-on-one interaction, social media is a great way to feel involved with your bank. You can react to their posts or ask questions for an immediate reply. With Facebook’s ability to chat with businesses that are online now, you can even have a personal conversation with whoever is managing the social media page.

Certain banks are even using the data you have on your profile to tailor your banking experience. For example, they might offer you more relevant promotions after seeing what brands or restaurants you are a fan of. While it’s not quite the same as sharing your interests with friends, it’s a lot better than a generic ad that has no significance to your life.

Live Video Chat

While Facebook is a good tool for quick questions you might have about your bank, it’s not the best venue for in-depth questions about your personal accounts. For that, many banks are starting to offer live video and text chat services. Banks understand that people don’t want to leave their house when they want to discuss investments or finances. To compensate for that, they are traveling virtually into the customer’s home instead of using web copy or a robot to explain options.

One bank that’s currently offering this service is Emirates NBD. When chatting, the environment is completely secure, meaning that you can share all of your personal and financial details without fear of them being hacked. Even better, you can learn more about products the bank offers, share important documents, or get approved for a loan all while talking to a real person.

Redesigned ATMs

ATMs are meant to be a bit impersonal by design. They help dispense money so that bank tellers can focus on more important tasks. However, that might be about to change thanks to a redesigned ATM by CaixaBank in Spain. These ATMs were designed with input from customers in order to provide an improved user experience. In particular, they are meant to help older customers who might not know how to navigate a complicated electronic device.

This includes features like a personable avatar who talks in sign language, as well as a screen reader and high-contrast screens. While these might seem like small touches, they definitely put the human touch back in using an ATM.

Banking will never quite be like the old days, when everything had to be processed by hand and done in person. However, with these new human touches, technology doesn’t have to be the cold and detached villain that it’s often painted to be.