Customer onboarding, the process of acquiring and signing up new customers, is a key issue for all organizations wishing to develop their business. Yet a study carried out for Abbyy reveals that too many companies still experience high abandonment rates, despite the implementation of digital and automation solutions. The survey, entitled “The State of Intelligent Automation Report, Drivers and Pain Point for Customer Onboarding”, involved 1,623 IT decision-makers in seven major industries.
According to the study, 54% of respondents consider onboarding new customers to be an essential process. Yet almost half of them reported abandonment rates in excess of 20%. The hardest-hit sectors are banking, with an abandonment rate approaching one in four customers (23%), closely followed by e-commerce (21%). Respondents identified three major consequences of these high abandonment rates: loss of business for 37% of them, loss of leads to competitors (33%), and difficulties in attracting new customers (31%).
There are many reasons for these high drop-out rates. First of all, the complexity of the process is cited as the main difficulty by a third of respondents, followed by identity checks (26%) and manual handling. Respondents also mentioned the slowness of the process, the lack of human interaction and having to provide the same information over and over again.
To improve onboarding processes, respondents said they wanted to make greater use of technology (44%), while reinforcing human interaction (26%). Although chatbots and process robotization are present among around 20% of respondents, these technologies are rather lower down the list of improvement areas considered. On the other hand, automated document processing and process mining are seen as interesting technologies by 21% of respondents.
Despite the growing interest in automation technologies, the study shows that current onboarding processes rely on both technology and human interaction. Over a third of respondents have even increased human interaction to improve their processes. This shows that the challenge is not just to automate processes, but also to understand the obstacles faced by potential customers, in order to simplify and streamline their journey.
This study underlines the importance of customer onboarding processes for the commercial development of organizations. This has a influence on conversion rates . To optimize these processes, it’s essential to understand the bottlenecks encountered by end-customers, and to simplify these paths accordingly. Companies can use technologies such as automated remote identity verification, automatic document control or electronic signatures (all levels) to improve these processes.