TCF Financial in Wayzata, Minn., says it has quickly begun reaping the benefits of a recent digital banking overhaul.

The $22 billion-asset company — which has 1.1 million retail digital accounts — converted nearly all of its customers to the new platform in September and has seen a 400% increase in concurrent users, TCF executives said.

The changes are meant to make TCF more competitive with larger, bigger-spending banks yet nimble enough to quickly offer new products and features, executives said.

Its new digital banking capabilities include remote deposit capture, fingerprint ID verification, budget-planning tools and quick-glance balance information. Also, its website now has a responsive design, which allows it to adapt to the size of the device it’s displayed on, be it tablet, phone or computer. TCF chose D3 as its primary technology partner.

Mobile banking concept
Bells and whistles
TCF's new digital banking capabilities include remote deposit capture, fingerprint ID verification, personal financial management tools and friendly displays on mobile. Adobe Stock

TCF officials said they were proud that the project was completed within 15 months after the board of directors gave its OK.

“This was done with incredible pace — it exceeded time-to-market expectations,” said Tom Butterfield, TCF’s chief information officer. “We accomplished that by using an integrated business and IT team. We co-located those teams, we used an agile methodology, and we did an internal soft launch within five months of the time we had board approval.”

The internal team handled all the application integration. The D3 team worked on the user interface. Both groups did testing and development together.

“More than half our customers are now using the mobile app as well,” Butterfield said. “We delivered a significantly improved customer experience.”

TCF sought to respond quickly to customer input and requests.

“As we were rolling it out, customers came back with some feedback: They wanted a running balance, they wanted to see each transaction as they posted it in there, [and] they wanted to see what that did to their balance,” said Mike Jones, executive vice president of consumer banking at TCF. “Six weeks later, we had that functionality ready to go and implemented on the fly.”

The bank was one of the early adopters of Apple Pay, Google and Samsung Pay, as well as a debit card with near-field-communication capability.
To help maintain a human connection when customers are interacting more often over digital channels, TCF also recently launched a new customer-relations-management platform that tracks every customer interaction.

“We want to know our customers: How do they want to be served?” Butterfield said. “How do they want to be interacted with? And we use that CRM platform to draw upon every interaction we have with our customer, be it digital, be it in the bank, be it vis-a-vis a call center, and adapt the way we approach and service our customers based on knowing them a little more intimately with all those interaction points.”

Chatbots and virtual assistants are on the bank’s radar, as is the ability to interact with digital speakers like Amazon Echo and Google Home.

“Like many banks, we're investigating that technology and how it fits into our overall model,” Butterfield said.

Within the next six months, Jones would like to add person-to-person payments to the platform and continue to explore the use of artificial intelligence and voice recognition.

“We continue to reach out to our customers, get voice of the customer, find out the functionalities that best meet their needs, and we'll have those on our road map as well,” Jones said.