Javelin: Recognizing Excellence in Financial Services

October 4, 2021
Author: Jacob Jegher

In the course of our ongoing market research at Javelin Strategy & Research, we find certain firms rise to the top. And to honor the hard work of these firms and their commitment to better serving the financial services industry, we recognize them for their exceptional quality of product or client experience, ability to meet customer demand, or overall excellence.

Javelin’s robust and in-depth scorecards evaluate financial institutions and vendors in the financial services ecosystem. These scorecards not only uncover who’s the top of their class, but also provide timely and trusted data about what’s changing in the industry and how firms can adjust to meet changing expectations.

What do each of the Digital Banking scorecards uncover about the financial services industry? Take a look below.

Mobile and Online Banking Awards

Javelin’s Mobile and Online Banking Scorecards are powerful tools for financial institutions of all sizes to benchmark and assess their digital acumen and performance against peers and competitors. Our 2021 data show that banking innovation is slowing in both mobile and online banking channels. We uncovered a worrisome gap in bank-led innovation that well-funded fintechs are rushing to fill.

  • The Mobile Banking Scorecard, now in its fifteenth year, analyzes and compares top US financial institutions’ mobile app for functionality, accessibility, app ratings and alerts. “This year’s Mobile Banking Scorecard highlights banks’ efforts to meet higher expectations and increased customer demand that have emerged during the pandemic,” explains Emmett Higdon, director, Digital Banking at Javelin. “Unfortunately, the incremental changes that we saw this year did little to address consumers’ need for immediate personal attention through mobile banking.”
  • The Online Banking Scorecard, now in its fifth year, helps financial institutions evaluate and promote features that cultivate customer relationships. In this mobile-first era, online banking is still the workhorse channel and the dominant digital touchpoint. “No bank can count on digital customer satisfaction if they ignore the online channel,” said Mark Schwanhausser, director, Digital Banking at Javelin. “This year, the pandemic exposed online weaknesses that are forcing banks to balance investments between the channels.”

These scorecards evaluate solutions offered by the nation’s largest financial institutions and examine trends in digital banking, encompassing more than 400 features across six categories: Ease of Use, Security Empowerment, Financial Fitness, Money Movement, Customer Service, and Account Opening.

Canadian Digital Banking Awards

2020 marked the first year Javelin expanded its scorecards program internationally to evaluate digital banking capabilities at the top seven Canadian financial institutions by assets. Canadian Digital Banking Scorecards supplement financial institutions’ digital strategy, competitive intelligence, and product planning with a rigorous evaluation of the digital experiences. The scorecard report details and ranks user experience trends and best practices in the Canadian market, covering nearly 400 features across six categories.

“There has never been a more critical time to meet digital customer expectations and demands. There are sweeping opportunities for all financial institutions to strategically invest in digital and competitively position their services for success,” said Jacob Jegher, president at Javelin.

Our 2021 Canadian Digital Banking Scorecard is slated to be published in Q4.

Small-Business Digital Account Opening Awards

2021 marked the inaugural year for Javelin’s Small-Business Digital Account Opening Scorecard. This report assesses vendors that address the complex, multifaceted challenge of opening small business checking accounts, from the perspective of both applicants and bankers.

Javelin evaluated vendors on three essential categories for success in digital account opening:

  1. Customer Journey, a quantitative evaluation of the applicant-facing flow, using a 108-point scorecard, from pre-application to product selection
  2. Administrative Tools, a qualitative evaluation of the banker-facing platform, application management, portfolio analysis and insight, and process testing and improvement
  3. User Experience, an assessment of innovative approaches that optimize efficiency and speed, reduce friction and abandonment, and build long-term customer engagement

In addition to identifying and evaluating the top features of digital account opening technologies, we lay out a detailed set of best practices for building an efficient and engaging account-opening process for business banking.

“Only half of the top 24 US banks offer digital account opening for small businesses, but it should be table stakes,” said Ian Benton, senior analyst, Digital Banking at Javelin. “Banks that force business owners to call a banker or visit a branch not only will fall behind competitors but also popular fintechs that are poaching customers from banks.”

Recognizing the firms that rise to the top is our way to honor them for their commitment to better serving financial services and keeps us on top of major industry trends. Contact us to learn more about these scorecards or our other Javelin practice areas.

Jacob Jegher
President, Javelin Strategy & Research

Jacob joined Escalent in December 2019 when Javelin Strategy & Research became party of the Escalent family. He is responsible for Javelin’s overall strategy, vision, growth and product development efforts. An experienced fintech executive and thought leader, Jacob advises clients on emerging technologies and business strategies related to digital banking, payments and fraud & security. Jacob has been widely quoted in the press, including in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, American Banker, Bloomberg, The Globe and Mail, and Financial Post. He is a sought-after speaker and has presented at numerous industry and corporate conferences, including Money20/20, Finovate, Digital Banking, NACHA Payments, and the Association for Financial Professionals. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree in Management Information Systems and Finance from McGill University.