Lloyds Banking Group Innovation Labs recently undertook a ‘proof of concept’ experiment with Signly – an augmented reality app to explore new ways for customers to interact with the Bank. We sat down with Senior Digital Inclusion Manager; Rachel Vann following the experiment and found out why designing and creating inclusive solutions for everyone is so important.
Tell us more about your role
I’m a Senior Digital Inclusion Manager responsible for delivering a number of initiatives that are focused on making the Group’s websites and mobile applications as accessible as possible. We have an ongoing programme of activities that ensure all our customers receive the right outcomes whatever their needs may be and includes raising awareness amongst our customers and colleagues. The Group has done lots to make all their services more accessible, my role includes evaluating and testing new technologies which could deliver further accessibility improvements across the Group.
Why do I love my role? I am a Child of Deaf Adults (CODA) and all my life I have experienced the frustrations, observing how restrictive it can be for individuals who are unable to access services when others can. I have seen how technology can enable people, this is why I am passionate about changing lives through technology and my experiences drive the desire to enable others.
How is Lloyds Banking Group transforming accessibility in financial services to be more inclusive?
We’re committed to becoming a better service provider for our disabled customers. It’s about removing barriers, increasing understanding and ensuring disabled people have the opportunities to fulfil their potential and realise their aspirations.
Lloyds Bank currently provides a wealth of ways for customers to interact with their bank. These include Text Relay and SignVideo, a signed video service which provides deaf customers with access to an online interpreter. For those with visual impairments, customers can request access to large print, braille and recorded literature. Our internet sites, and mobile banking apps are created to be as accessible as possible for customers with different types of impairments.
Digital is firmly at the centre of our strategy, Because of this we constantly explore new innovations that focus on enhancing digital capabilities and transforming our customers’ experiences. Examples have been the ‘Signly app’, ‘tap to bank’, ‘App Sign’, ‘Remote Advisor’ & ‘Remote ID upload’.
Tap to Bank
We’ve been trialling using contactless card to verify a customer when setting up their mobile banking, using NFC technology on Android phones.
A new service which allows customers logged into online banking (on their PC) to authenticate a new payments by logging into their mobile banking app, removing the need to have a telephone call.
Being able to bank online provides individuals the independence, which enables them to manage their money more effectively. Lloyds Banking Group has over 12 million active internet banking users and over eight million use mobile banking, making us the ‘biggest mobile bank’ in the UK.
As part of our Helping Britain Prosper Plan, around one in every four Lloyds Banking Group colleagues will be dedicated to helping people and organisations use the internet to improve digital skills and financial capability. This substantial commitment has delivered over 23,000 Digital Champions within the Group. To help deliver this commitment Lloyds Banking Group aims to create the most digitally capable workforce in Financial Services, through the LBG Digital Academy. Additionally, to ensure this commitment has maximum impact within communities, the bank partners with the Good Things Foundation, providing the Group with access to a network of over 5,000 UK online centres.