Artificial Intelligence (AI) and robots may be the future that has now come, but Kenyans are yet to warm up to the evolutionary technological methods in the banking sector.

As per a new survey conducted by Kenya Bankers Association (KBA), the country’s banks look set to wait a little longer for customers to gain trust in latest technological advances.

KBA’s Banking Industry Customer Service Survey says bank customers in the country would rather have humans handle their customer service needs.

As many as 80% of bank customers still value the traditional model of customer service.

KBA however cautioned that this study, conducted during the last quarter of 2018, is not conclusive as it did not measure whether those shying away from AI and robots were aware of the tech’s usefulness.

“Further research is needed to establish whether this trend owes to low levels of awareness about the value proportion of chatbots, robots and other emerging data-driven Artificial Intelligence technologies,” the survey says.

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Human handling was dominant in the case of customer care call centers, as well as emails.

Based on feedback from 6,121 respondents, the report records that customer contact centers are the most preferred complaint resolution touchpoints, dominating acceptance across all age categories.

Email correspondence follows, with older respondents showing a keen interest in using this mode of communication for their banking needs.

In contrast, technology-driven services rated highly, with mobile banking topping the most favorite of bank channels at 49%.

Online banking (16%) and ATMs (15%) followed.

As regards the banking industry, 89% of respondents said they had a better service
experience in 2018 compared to 2017.

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The survey also revealed that the size of a bank does not necessarily translate to better or worse service upon customers.

Credit Bank, for example which ranks as a Tier III Bank, outperformed many Tier I and Tier II banks.

In the rating of KBA’s 47 members, Credit Bank ranked third, behind Equity Bank and Standard Chartered Bank who took the top two spots respectively.

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