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Digital milestone for Standard Bank



MASERU – STANDARD Lesotho Bank has embarked on a digital journey as it seeks to keep ahead of the needs of its clients.
CEO Mpho Vumbukani described the digital banking platforms introduced by the bank as a “milestone and a result of years of planning and strategic thinking in the desire to ensure that the bank remains relevant and moves forward with its customers”.

Customers are increasingly becoming educated and technologically adept, said Vumbukani, noting that as technology advances, clients are ready to try new technologies that suit their banking, communication and lifestyle needs in an era of digitization.

“We have taken very bold and giant steps to the point where we can safely say that we have reclaimed our position and remain true to our vision as the leading financial services provider and we are best positioned to demonstrate this leadership in the digital space,” Vumbukani said.

Vumbukani stated that the digital transformation journey started when the financial institution launched the Core Banking System Upgrade called Finacle in 2017.
It involved the improvement of the back-end processing systems that handle banking operations including teller services, sales, loan orientation, payment systems, ATMs and electronic services.
Prior, the bank had in 2014 launched mobile and internet Banking and introduced it as #Nthotsebohlale which has since been improved, said Selloane Tsike, Head of Personal and Business Banking.

“The new products are a testament of the dream towards building the bank of the future, where we strive to make banking convenient, cheap, and suitable for the customers of the next generation,” she said. The bank has 96 ATMs countrywide. Back in the day, these ATMs would only provide cash withdrawal services but due to the
digital journey, they now have two capabilities.

The first is a cardless service that offers “Instant Money” while a facility for cardless deposits is in the pipeline, said Tsike.
Tsike said the Instant Money facility allows customers to send money to their beneficiaries even when they do not have an account with the bank.
They can just transfer money by purchasing a voucher on the mobile banking platform that they can redeem at any ATM.
The service is available at all of the bank’s 96 ATMs.

Another product is the ATM Express Depositor, a facility which offers Real-Time Cash Deposit into an account.
Its functionality allows for cash deposits from an ATM machine.
“We started this with own deposits and we will soon introduce deposits to third parties. This functionality is available 24/7 on 27 ATMs that have been strategically commissioned throughout the country,” she said.

The Smart App facility has also been introduced as part of the digital journey.  It can download on Appstore and Playstore for iOS and Android devices to link accounts across the Stanbic Bank.
The app allows customers to link their accounts across the Standard Bank Group, including the Credit Card. The bank has also introduced Enterprise online.

Here, businesses can now enjoy a new platform tailored to meet their needs for bulk payments of up to 2 000 beneficiaries at a time.
The bank has also installed Bulk Cash Depositors Machines at Pioneer Mall, Maputsoe and City Branch for businesses that are cash intensive such as retail shops.
Businesses can deposit large sums of cash without teller assistance, and like any other digital platform they work 24/7.
The money reflects on customers’ accounts in real time.

Tokase Mphutlane

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