Money talks: how AI is changing the way we manage our finances

By utilising advanced technologies such as natural language processing, machine learning, and generative AI, conversational banking offers a more intuitive, personalised, and accessible approach to managing our money.
Industries: Finance
  • The benefits of conversational banking
  • WallyGPT is an AI-powered assistant for personal finance
  • Neobank Dave launches an AI-powered customer service chatbot
  • Reserve Bank of India introduces conversational payments

Money plays a central role in our lives, shaping our experiences, opportunities, and interactions with the world around us. From our earliest days, we learn the value of money and the importance of managing it wisely. As we grow older, our relationship with money evolves, becoming more complex and nuanced. We use money to meet our basic needs, pursue our dreams, and build the lives we desire. Despite its importance, however, our relationship with money can often be a source of stress and frustration. Navigating the world of personal finance can be a daunting experience, with a seemingly endless array of products, services, and decisions to make. When we encounter challenges or have questions, we often find ourselves at the mercy of impersonal, bureaucratic systems that can leave us feeling disconnected and unsupported.

But what if there was a better option? Indeed, what if we could interact with our money and the institutions that manage it in a more natural, intuitive way? This is where the concept of conversational banking comes in. By embracing emerging technologies like artificial intelligence and natural language processing, financial institutions can create experiences that feel more like talking to a knowledgeable friend than dealing with a faceless corporation. Imagine being able to ask questions, get advice, and complete transactions simply by speaking or typing in natural language—no more navigating confusing menus or endlessly waiting on hold. With conversational banking, the power of financial management could be at our fingertips, accessible through the same familiar interfaces we use to communicate with friends and family. Of course, the idea of talking to our money raises important questions and concerns. How secure and reliable are these systems? Will they be accessible to everyone, regardless of technical expertise or financial literacy? And what role will human customer service representatives play in this new model?

The benefits of conversational banking

As we begin our exploration of conversational banking, it’s important to delve into the specific benefits this approach offers to consumers. One of the most significant benefits of conversational banking is the seamless, intuitive experience it provides. Unlike traditional graphical user interfaces, which can be confusing and cumbersome to navigate, conversational interfaces mimic the natural flow of human interaction. This means that customers can engage with their financial services provider using the same familiar language and communication patterns they use in everyday life. Whether through voice commands or text-based interactions, conversational banking allows for a more personalised, user-friendly experience that adapts to each individual’s unique needs and preferences.

In addition to providing a more natural and intuitive interface, conversational banking also offers unparalleled accessibility and convenience. With the ability to interact with financial services through a variety of devices, from smartphones to smart speakers, customers can manage their money from anywhere and at any time. This eliminates the need for time-consuming visits to physical bank branches or the frustration of navigating complex online portals. By meeting customers where they are, conversational banking makes financial management a more integrated part of daily life. Another significant advantage of conversational banking is its ability to provide personalised financial guidance and support. By leveraging customer data and advanced analytics, these systems can offer tailored insights, recommendations, and educational resources based on an individual’s unique financial situation, activity and goals. This can include everything from budgeting tips and savings alerts to investment advice and retirement planning. By proactively engaging with customers and providing actionable guidance, conversational banking can help individuals make more informed, confident decisions about their money.

Beyond offering personalised guidance, conversational banking also streamlines the process of conducting financial transactions. With the ability to transfer funds, pay bills, manage subscriptions, and initiate investments through simple, natural language commands, these interfaces eliminate the need for customers to navigate multiple apps or websites. This streamlined approach to financial management saves time, reduces frustration, and makes it easier for individuals to stay on top of their financial obligations. Finally, conversational banking can place a strong emphasis on security, ensuring that customers’ sensitive financial information remains protected. By incorporating advanced authentication measures and encrypting all interactions, the risk of fraud and unauthorised access is minimised. This focus on security will help to build trust and confidence in the technology, making customers more likely to adopt and rely on conversational banking for their financial needs.

WallyGPT is an AI-powered assistant for personal finance

WallyGPT is a groundbreaking generative AI platform that aims to revolutionise personal finance management. Designed to simplify the complexities of money matters and empower users with tailored insights, WallyGPT employs the latest advances in artificial intelligence to provide a truly personalised approach to financial guidance. By analysing the user’s economic history, spending patterns, and goals, the AI assistant creates a comprehensive profile that forms the foundation for its personalised recommendations. Through natural, conversational interactions, WallyGPT allows users to ask questions, express their concerns, and seek advice on a wide range of financial topics. Whether the customer is grappling with the challenges of creating a budget that aligns with their lifestyle, seeking strategies to pay off debt, or looking to invest for the future, WallyGPT can provide clear, actionable guidance that takes into account your specific situation. Furthermore, the app simplifies the process of tracking daily expenses across various categories, allowing the customer to set up custom rules and alerts that align with their lifestyle and priorities. By providing a clear picture of your spending habits and offering personalised suggestions for improvement, WallyGPT empowers customers to take control of their finances and make informed decisions that lead to long-term success.

For many people, the world of finance can feel like an intimidating maze of jargon and complex concepts. Recognising this challenge, WallyGPT dedicates itself to promoting financial literacy and making it accessible to everyone. The AI assistant breaks down complicated ideas into easily understandable explanations, clarifying the terminology used by financial professionals. By providing clear, relatable examples and answering questions in a friendly, conversational manner, WallyGPT helps users develop a deeper understanding of their finances, fostering confidence and empowering them to make sound decisions. The app employs cutting-edge techniques to protect sensitive information, ensuring that no individual can be tracked or compromised. By providing limited data in specific contexts and automatically deleting information after a brief learning period, WallyGPT prioritises user privacy above all else. Finally, the AI assistant’s data is never used for training purposes, and banking or account details are kept strictly confidential, giving users peace of mind.

“On the consumer side, we know that people want real-time responses these days, especially millennials and Gen Z, which is the majority of our audience at this point. They’re not wanting to talk to somebody on the phone, they want real-time chat responses if they can get it”.

Jason Wilk, the CEO of Dave

Neobank Dave launches an AI-powered customer service chatbot

Similarly, neobank and personal finance app Dave recently launched a new generative AI-powered chatbot called DaveGPT, which leverages the latest advancements in natural language processing and machine learning to provide real-time, human-like responses to customer inquiries. Unlike its predecessor, DaveBot, which relied on a rules-based model and generated canned responses, DaveGPT employs a large language model approach, resulting in a more natural and engaging interaction. The impact of this upgrade is quite significant, as evidenced by the 89 per cent resolution rate achieved by the new chatbot.

“People really are getting much more to the bottom of what they’re looking for”, says Jason Wilk, CEO of Dave. “On the consumer side, we know that people want real-time responses these days, especially millennials and Gen Z, which is the majority of our audience at this point. They don’t want to talk to somebody on the phone, they want real-time chat responses if they can get it. And AI is certainly the best way to get a most human-like response with the best accuracy”.

Looking ahead, Wilk envisions a future iteration of DaveGPT that integrates customers’ financial data to offer even more tailored advice. By analysing an individual’s spending habits, income, and financial goals, the AI-powered chatbot could provide customised recommendations on how to save money, optimise budgets, and achieve long-term financial objectives. This level of personalisation would further enhance the customer experience and help solidify Dave’s position as a leader in the personal finance management space.

Reserve Bank of India introduces conversational payments

During 2023’s Global Fintech Fest, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) unveiled a new feature that allows users to conduct transactions using voice commands. It is available on the Unified Payments Interface (UPI); a widely adopted digital payment system in India that enables instant fund transfers between bank accounts using a mobile app. The Conversational Payments feature is designed to make the payment process more intuitive, accessible, and user-friendly. Users will no longer need to rely on text-based commands or manual input to complete their transactions. Instead, they can simply speak to the AI-powered system, which understands their intent and executes the desired action. This voice-enabled functionality is accessible through two convenient modes: on-call and in-app. The on-call mode allows users to dial a dedicated number and follow the prompts of an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system to carry out their transactions. Alternatively, the in-app mode enables users to utilise voice commands directly within the UPI app to initiate and complete payments.

The process of making a transaction through Conversational Payments is relatively straightforward and intuitive. Users start by verbally expressing their intent, such as transferring funds or checking their account balance. The system, powered by advanced voice recognition technology, interprets the user’s command and responds accordingly. To ensure security, users are required to provide their UPI PIN through voice input, adding an extra layer of authentication to the process. Upon successful completion of the transaction, the system offers a verbal confirmation. Behind the scenes, Conversational Payments uses a powerful combination of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and natural language processing. These technologies work together seamlessly to understand and interpret user commands, facilitating smooth and accurate transactions. As users continue to engage with Conversational Payments on UPI, the system continuously learns and adapts to their unique preferences and habits. With each successful interaction, the underlying algorithms become more refined, allowing for an increasingly personalised and efficient user experience.

Closing thoughts

The rise of conversational banking and AI-powered financial management tools like WallyGPT and DaveGPT represents a dramatic shift in the way we engage with our finances. By utilising advanced technologies such as natural language processing, machine learning, and generative AI, these systems offer a more intuitive, personalised, and accessible approach to managing our money. As we navigate the complexities of the modern financial landscape, the ability to interact with our finances through natural, conversational interfaces provides a much-needed sense of empowerment and control.

The benefits of conversational banking go beyond mere convenience. By offering proactive, data-driven insights and recommendations, these AI-powered tools have the potential to enhance financial literacy, empower individuals to make more informed decisions, and ultimately promote better financial outcomes. As the technology continues to evolve and mature, we can anticipate the development of even more sophisticated and personalised financial management experiences that adapt to our unique needs and goals, enabling us to build an economic future that is not only more convenient and personalised but also more just, inclusive, and empowering for all.

Industries: Finance
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