In a world where remote delivery has become the norm, it’s more important than ever for community-centric financial institutions (FIs) to choose the right digital banking platform. While it may be tempting to compare features among leading platforms, this can be a somewhat futile exercise. This is because each feature is simply a collection of code that can be (relatively) easily replicated. In other words, if you do a feature comparison among leading digital banking platforms, you’ll quickly discover that many platforms offer an extremely similar list of core features.
The question is not, “What features do you have?” The question should be, “Why did you build the features you did, and the way you did?” What differentiates Tyfone is the thought that we put behind every development effort. Our development is based on what we call the three pillars:
- Customer input
- Digital banking market analysis
- Tech industry insights
At Tyfone, we focus first on building quality relationships with our customers. That enables us to build quality software with the features that community-centric FIs really want and need. In other words, our development efforts are driven largely by the in-depth conversations we have with our customers.
We employ three primary communication channels to facilitate these discussions. First, we have weekly meetings with every single customer. These are not group meetings; they’re one-on-one meetings between a customer and their dedicated account manager.
These discussions are generally more tactical in nature. They primarily address the short-term needs of the FI. They also give the FI the opportunity to keep Tyfone in the loop about any upcoming changes we should know about. Sometimes these calls last just a few minutes and sometimes they last much longer.
It’s worth noting, too, that to be an account manager at Tyfone, you need to have development experience on your resume. This means the discussion can get as technical as the customer wants and our account manager will be able to participate fully in the conversation. They’re not just note takers.
Next we have our quarterly update sessions. These are presentations that we make to all of our customers as a group. This gives us the opportunity to recap what we’ve accomplished the previous quarter and what our customers should expect in the coming quarters, as well as provide an in-depth look at our product roadmap. These sessions focus more on our strategic vision for the future.
It’s not, however, just Tyfone doing the talking. We invite customers to present on a specific topic if they have a solution that others may find beneficial. And we encourage plenty of open discussion during this call.
Lastly, someone from our executive team meets at least annually with one or more executives from each FI to have a very high-level, strategic discussion. This is an agenda-driven conversation where we invite the customer to do most of the talking. These conversations aren’t limited to digital banking. Rather, we want to hear all of the customer’s strategic goals for the coming months so that we can better understand their overall direction. This allows us to be more responsive and thoughtful in addressing the areas that are touched by digital banking.
We conduct our market analysis from the inside out. First, we look carefully at what we’re doing to see if there are any obvious improvements we can make. Then, as part of the communication effort discussed earlier, we ask our customers what they’re hearing out in the marketplace.
Competitive intelligence is also very important. We keep a close eye on other digital banking vendors so we can see what they’re saying to the market, whether we agree with it or not. This generally helps us confirm the soundness of our own strategy.
Finally, we watch what the big banks are doing. Like it or not, their massive budgets often put them at the forefront of technology. We’re able to learn both from their successes and their failures.
At Tyfone, we recognize that digital banking plays a relatively small role in the lives of our end users. For example, a consumer typically uses our mobile app for a very specific, needs-based purpose like transferring money or paying a bill. If they have some time to kill, they’re probably not looking at their checking account; they’re reading Google News or shopping on Amazon or watching YouTube videos.
Although these other activities don’t relate directly to digital banking, they do shape a user’s overall expectations for a digital experience. That’s why we’re always asking ourselves, what is Google doing? What is Apple doing? What is Facebook doing? What is Uber doing? It’s imperative that we create a digital experience that lives up to those created by these technology titans. It’s these insights that help us create the most frictionless user experience possible.
The Development Process
After we’ve gathered and analyzed all this information, we roll it all into an Agile development methodology. Agile software development refers to software development methodologies centered round the idea of iterative development, where requirements and solutions evolve through collaboration between self-organizing, cross-functional teams. It’s a matter of design, develop, test, repeat – always driven by the information we gather.
The key is that Tyfone uses industry-standard methodologies. Not just the financial industry, but methodologies that are common across the entire software development spectrum. The company is committed to employing the most modern tools to ensure that our products are always at the forefront of digital banking technology.
Effective, API-driven third-party integrations are key to success in today’s digital environment. FIs need to be able deploy the solutions they want, when they want. At Tyfone, we group these integrations into four categories:
Fully customized integrations created for the benefit of a single client.
Custom integrations that we expect to be re-usable, in whole or in part, with other customers.
Integrations requested by multiple customers.
High-priority, fast-tracked integrations.
The key here is that regardless of the customer need, we have policies and procedures in place to get virtually any integration done on time and at the most reasonable cost.
Tyfone is an organization driven by its commitment to its customers as partners. We value these relationships as our most valuable assets. We’re available when our customers need us, 24/7. We know that if a customer calls at 3 a.m., they’re not calling to discuss the weather. We give these urgent matters our immediate attention, regardless of the time of day.
Because we focus on the customer relationship first and foremost, we know that we’ll always develop the technology that those customers want and need. And we know that every feature, no matter how common or how unusual, will function the way your customers want it, need and expect it to. That’s the Tyfone way.
Everyone builds features, not everyone builds relationships. We build both!