Elan's Matt Carpenter on the positive impact of payments

 

January 28, 2021

Matt Carpenter, senior vice president and market director of Elan Financial Services, explores how his firm has responded to the drastic changes the pandemic has brought to the financial landscape and the world at large. "We need to continue to think about how to engage our partners within today’s reality and how to help those partners serve their customers in new ways," he says in the eBook: A Look Forward: What Executives Wish for America and the World in 2021. "We need to be ever mindful of constituents facing different struggles or seeking new opportunities. Even after the pandemic subsides, the digital acceleration we experienced in 2020 will not — it is here to stay." 

 

The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed the world, our lives and our businesses — possibly forever. For the last nine months, many of us have been learning how to work remotely, communicate remotely, learn remotely, socialize remotely and more. In the midst of these struggles, the payments industry has risen to the occasion and innovated to become an even more integral part of the economy and people’s lives. Throughout the pandemic, payments have been an invaluable tool to connect, support and enact change. Whether through digital payments for grocery runs or donations to local and national causes, consumers have embraced payments as a tool to support their day-to-day goals.

 

As we enter 2021, it is my wish that we continue to embrace payments as a powerful tool we will use to create the new reality we will see post-pandemic, as our communities recover and prepare for what’s next. At Elan Financial Services, this means we need to continue to think about how to engage our partners within today’s reality and how to help those partners serve their customers in new ways. We need to be ever mindful of constituents facing different struggles or seeking new opportunities. And, as normalcy starts to reemerge, we need to be ready to help our partners best serve their customers in innovative ways through payments.

 

We’ve worked hard to enable consumers to adopt contactless payments in a seamless manner. The pandemic has generated a surge in mobile wallet usage so that payments can be made without ever touching a card. As a result of this groundswell, we’ve focused a great deal of our attention on the ability to instantly provision new and existing card credentials into digital wallets. Additionally, new and reissued cards are being delivered with contactless technology.

 

When the pandemic forced consumers online, the fraudsters followed suit, and we are committed to protecting our partners’ cardmembers in this digital space. Investments in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning became critical. From real-time identity proofing and credit line access strategies to online card transaction protections and safer online payment options, Elan provides layers of security so cardmembers can use their cards with far greater confidence.

 

Financial institutions are also learning that their digital strategies must deliver the same level of service excellence that a customer might expect in a branch. As such, Elan has focused its development pipeline to prioritize and invest in technologies that allow customers to be more self-reliant. This focus includes new do-it-yourself (DIY) servicing capabilities, including enhanced functionality to facilitate payments, report suspected fraud and send reminders when accounts are past-due.

 

We also now offer authentication mechanisms coupled with DIY assistance tools for making account changes. Elan will continue to develop differentiated expertise and talents that will help us support our partners’ needs.

 

In 2021, I hope we see continued significant innovation around new ways to help consumers and small businesses rebuild their financial stability and conduct their day-to-day lives. I think any hope of returning to previous norms will quickly pass, as a further heightened level of innovation and change will become the standard as we move forward in the 21st century. Wishes to all for a safe holiday season and a positive outlook heading into 2021.

 

Read the full eBook: A Look Forward: What Executives Wish for America and the World in 2021 on PYMNTS.com.

 

This article originally appeared on PYMNTS.com on January 20, 2021.

“We need to be ever mindful of constituents facing different struggles or seeking new opportunities. Even after the pandemic subsides, the digital acceleration we experienced in 2020 will not - it is here to stay.”