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ANZ wins Mobile Banking App of the Year award

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Winning the Mobile Banking App of the Year award in 2020 is the culmination of ANZ's transformation as a business and the way it interacts with customers. In 2017, it merged its technology and digital teams as part of its New Ways of Working program, creating a more "agile" workforce.

Darren Baird, digital portfolio lead at ANZ, says today's app is a product of that change. From the outset the newly formed team agreed it would release monthly updates, no matter how big or small, on the proviso it addressed what customers wanted.

"We have spent a lot of time paying close attention to what our customers are saying. We surveyed them and held forums and understood what they really wanted and valued in the app," says Baird.

consumer finance awards 2020 mobile banking app

In the past 12 months ANZ has released a feature in its banking app that allows customers to activate their new debit or credit card and add it to their digital wallet or PayID without having to wait for the plastic to arrive.

"This might sound basic, but it was what they were really crying out for," says Baird.

As well as improving its goals-based savings solutions, ANZ has made it possible for customers to download, print and share their paper-based statements through the app. This has proved vital during the Covid-19 pandemic: at its peak, the bank was seeing 55,000 statements downloaded per day compared with the more normal 30,000. The app was seeing more activity than the branch network or contact centres.

ANZ's Spendi feature has also been a winner among its customers, tracking their incidental spending on any given day and any given account.

"Some people don't think their Netflix is a discretionary spend, and that's okay, but every dollar you spend is a dollar you haven't saved," says Baird.

The most used feature of the app is the balance check, but again Baird notes that what sounds like a mundane task might be the most important. His team is constantly thinking about how many steps it takes and how to "make sure nothing gets in the way of that task".

He points to a bank balance widget that customers can use on their smartphone home screen so they don't have to log in. You don't have to tap to log into the app if you're using face ID or your thumbprint to unlock your smartphone - "you're straight in and your balance is there".

Last year ANZ announced a partnership with third-party transaction service Look Who's Charging. It sources information about your transaction history so that you can see who charged you, where they're located and their contact details - all within the app.

Last year's winner and this year's runner-up, ING, is commended for its simple interface and ease of use while having robust features that are common to most apps. Its round-up feature is also noteworthy, but this is becoming more common, too.

Third-placed Commonwealth Bank has the most popular app in the banking sector with an estimated seven million installs. It's highly noted for its security and does score higher with Android users.

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