Senior IT project manager at BGL BNP Paribas in Luxembourg, Renaud Maire oversees digital...
The banking jobs : Hello Bank! Financial Advisor
In 2013, BNP Paribas created Hello Bank!, its fully online bank. It now employs 240 people with a passion for digital technology, including Financial Advisor David Roucheray. He discovered the exciting world of neo-banks and customer relations after joining Hello Bank! in 2015. Let’s learn more about his background and current position.
What do you do as a Financial Advisor at Hello Bank!?
I point my customers and leads toward the best products and services for their needs. As the customer’s first point of contact with Hello Bank!, my role mainly involves understanding the customer’s expectations, their personal and professional situation, the distribution of their assets, assessing their market knowledge, etc. In short, I define their financial profile and update their ‘KYC’—Know Your Customer. Each contact is a chance for us to learn more about our customer. Our goal is to get a better grasp of their need and quickly direct them to the right expert, so they can save time. Having a detailed understanding allows us to identify potential new needs and introduce the full range of our offer—savings accounts, loans, insurance, stocks, etc. After all, we are the market’s only online bank to offer such a wide range of products and services.
Who are your customers and what do they come to you for?
They are mainly executives and other high-ranking professionals with several bank accounts, mostly looking for a specific solution to a precise need—an auto loan to buy a car, investment tools, or routine banking products and services. At Hello Bank!, customers can unlock every aspect of our offer simply by opening an account. Customers love the simplicity of our service and the free account maintenance and debit card. BNP Paribas customers also benefit from streamlined services between the two banks, since they have the same bank account details. Today, Hello Bank! serves a total of 390,000 customers. We want to raise that figure to 600,000 by 2020.
Customers love the simplicity of our service and the free account maintenance and debit card.
How is a financial advisor for an online bank different from a financial advisor for a classic bank?
It doesn’t change much on a fundamental level. I would say that you have to feel at home with new technologies, because our offer is 100% digital and our customers ask us a lot of technical questions—how to activate their digital keys or contactless features on their mobile phones, how Paylib works, etc. Hello Bank! helped me demystify the ‘suit and tie’ image of the typical financial advisor.
Digitizing financial services is a major challenge for BNP Paribas and the banking industry as a whole. What do you think the future holds for an online bank like Hello Bank!?
We are continuously innovating. I take part in a taskforce dedicated to the future of our digital offer. After developing the chatbot on Facebook Messenger to answer the most common questions—about disputing charges and getting a bank draft—we are now exploring virtual reality solutions to optimize the customer experience and enable them to ‘meet’ their advisor. Another project we are now beta testing for our customer segment is the Buy My Home app for real estate projects. This tool lets users search for homes, calculate their debt capacity for the target assets and then get in touch with a net mortgage expert to bring their project to fruition.
What qualities does it take to excel at this job?
It’s not enough just to have a knack for new technologies. Hello Bank! may be a fully online bank, but the human aspect is an essential part of the profession. It’s important to have empathy for customers, and even a level of curiosity to stay up-to-date on the latest digital trends in banking.
You joined Hello Bank! in September 2015. What attracted you to the bank?
It really happened by chance! After working as an acquisitions director in the telecommunications industry, I first applied for a position as a cashflow manager at BNP Paribas. But when they saw my sales background, human resources strongly encouraged me to join Hello Bank!. And they were right—this experience has introduced me to a new side of financial advising while broadening my career prospects. In fact, I’m now leaving retail banking to join Arval, BNP Paribas’ subsidiary dedicated to vehicle leasing. It’s an entirely new career path for me. Hello Bank! offers a lot of exciting opportunities for internal advancement, notably in management—several of my fellow advisors have become Team Managers.
What do you like most about the profession?
In our Paris and Lille offices, we enjoy a hard-working yet relaxed environment.
we enjoy a hard-working yet relaxed environment. It is created by our young employees
It is created by our young employees—the average age is 30—and encouraged by the fact that we do not receive customers on site. We have a regular series of events in the office, during major sports events and the holiday season, and many initiatives to promote our well-being—we’re currently installing a yoga and meditation room in our Mac 19 building. It’s perfect for generating synergies between teams and meeting other people within the Group.
What is the biggest challenge you are facing at the moment?
Customer satisfaction is a constant challenge, because it is often so elusive. For example, giving the right answer to a customer does not always guarantee their satisfaction. That’s why we continue to hone our communications through Relational Excellence training, where we learn how to express our empathy with customers, both in speech and writing.
“ Stay motivated and come join the adventure at Hello Bank!. The entity will greet you with open arms and meet your needs for advancement and change. They give a fair shot to everyone who wants to shine. Don’t let the opportunity pass you by. Join the Group and discover the vast diversity of its businesses. ”
Hello Bank! Financial Advisor
Do you have an interesting story to share about your position?
When I first started at Hello Bank!, I was on the phone with a lead who was asking about the fee structure for a product. As the conversation went on, I realized I was talking to someone I used to know in business school. What a small world! So, I had to transfer them to a coworker.
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