Responding to the news that news that Barclays’ customers can now ‘switch off’ certain types of spending with its new Merchant Control facility, Matt Philips, vice president and Head of Financial Services at Diebold Nixdorf talked to IBS Intelligence about the initiative.

Matt believes that this is an important shift to demonstrate the sector’s responsibility in society to aid customers beyond the traditional banking/customer transactional relationship.

Philips said: “The news that Barclays customers can now ‘switch off’ certain types of spending with its new Merchant Control facility points to yet another shift in the financial services industry. We’re seeing banks move from playing a purely transactional role in society to helping customers with their personal financial management.

“The reason for the shift? Well, put simply, traditional banks are painfully aware that they need to add value to their customers’ lives. It’s now easier than ever for customers to switch to a different provider that can give them a more joined-up digital offering, and with new approaches from the likes of Atom, Monzo and Metro Bank upsetting the apple cart, there’s seemingly no such thing as guaranteed customer loyalty any more.”

Philips said: “Starling Bank introduced a similar service earlier this year with its gambling blocker, and we have seen similar ideas from PayPal, which allows customers to set up an extra layer of authorisation (a kind of ‘are you sure?’ check) before certain payments are made or accepted. Next year we can expect to see more of the traditional banks adding value to their customers, in the fight to deliver go-to, app-sized personal financial management tools.”

by Bill Boyle
IBS Intelligence Senior Editor