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TSB launches Smart Agent with IBM in COVID-19 response

UK bank TSB has launched a Smart Agent function, developed with IBM and introduced in just five days, to serve customers impacted by the coronavirus.

The Smart Agent, a virtual assistant, will help TSB’s staff serve customers despite working from home, and it will free up staff across branches and contact centres to support vulnerable customers and those in need of essential services.

The agent will give customers the ability to apply for COVID-19-specific measures such as repayment holidays on mortgages, personal loans and business loans, as well as the option to ask questions and get answers ‘live’ from employees.TSB logo

IBM has worked with TSB throughout its technology transformation – building and managing its private cloud environment and running services across the core banking platform with the infrastructure being operated and managed by IBM under supervision by TSB.

Over 250 TSB employees from across the bank have now been trained to provide the service after having stepped in to support customers during the crisis.

TSB’s Chief Operating Officer, Suresh Viswanathan, said: “We’re determined to help our customers in every way we can during this difficult period. That’s why it was important to deliver this solution quickly and I’m pleased we’ve been able to get it up and running in five days – it’s a testament to our teams working in partnership with IBM and our modern banking platform. It means that our colleagues across TSB who may be working from home can continue to help customers to access all our online and digital services.”

TSB noted that the service, currently available on its website, will be introduced to the TSB mobile app as well.

Michael Conway, AI Practice Leader, IBM Services, UK and Ireland, said: “This COVID-19 response has been a great example of IBM and TSB working closely to deliver great outcomes at pace to help customers in real need. We’re looking forward to continuing our partnership and continuing to help transform the customer’s experience across the bank.”

“As the financial services industry continues its rapid transformation, banks are embracing an increasingly digital future, having a cloud-based platform helps TSB roll out new digital offerings and deliver innovative cloud-native services to its customers. This shows how technology can be employed at pace to further enhance the stellar work already being carried out by the bank’s employees.”

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