FRIBOURG NETWORK FREIBURG
MEMBER OF THE BOARD
FRIBOURG CANTONAL BANK (BCF)
Has the BCF made the digital leap yet?
Yes, indeed. For example, our payment transaction processes – ATMs, e-banking and mobile banking – have long been digitized. We were also the first bank in Western Switzerland to offer our customers a complete online mortgage service. FRiBenk, the online tool we launched in 2016, lets customers become their own mortgage broker, without having to go through one of our advisers first. Once the customer has entered their personal and property- related information, FriBenk checks the application and delivers an answer in minutes. We pass on the efficiency gains to our customers in the form of up to 30% lower interest rates. At the moment, the service is open only to our private customers who wish to renew their existing mortgage or purchase a new home.
Is this the beginning of the end for face-to-face contact with customers?
No. Customer relations remain paramount. We developed our online services in response to demand from a certain section of the public that preferred to forgo banking advice in return for more favorable conditions. We are also involved in a number of digitization projects which aim to increase the effectiveness of our internal processes. Ultimately, the customer will also reap the benefits of these changes because the quality of our advice will improve and our already excellent cost-to-sales-revenue ratio will be even better.
What do you mean by “cost-to-sales-revenue ratio”?
The cost-to-sales-revenue ratio expresses the efficiency of a bank and is largely determined by the structure, processes and degree of automation of the organization. In 2015, our bank efficiency ratio was 34.05%. This was well above the Swiss average – 58% – for the same year.