Provident Bank: Move to digital banking here to stay, study finds

Provident Bank, an Iselin-based financial institution, announced on Thursday a new study that found due to COVID-19, more and more people are moving their banking habits online.

The poll of 400 U.S. adults found the majority of respondents (61%) since the pandemic began are using mobile and digital banking more than they did earlier in the year, 31% were already using it, and just 7% are not using it at all — with most being 54 years or older.

“At this time of uncertainty, having a financial partner you can rely on has never been more important and Provident Bank is working hard to ensure we are continually meeting customers’ needs,” Josephine Moran, executive vice president and director of retail banking, Provident Bank, said. “Online and mobile banking has offered customers the accessibility and convenience that they need, and we expect this shift to digital banking to continue as people enjoy the flexibility that digital-based banking offers.”

Of those who are currently using digital banking, 56% said they will continue to do so for the most part and 6% said they will primarily use in-person banking when branches can reopen.

A majority (88%) said their financial institution was able to meet their banking needs as the virus spread, and nearly all (98%) did not switch banks during that time. However, when choosing a bank, consumers, especially those ages 18 to 24 (61%), are now more likely to question the bank’s involvement in the community and social responsibility (nearly 40% in June 2020 compared to 20% in February 2020).

Customers also said these are the most important factors when considering returning back to in-person banking:

  • Offer hand sanitizer to employees and customers;
  • Limit the number of customers permitted in a branch; and
  • Require that masks be worn by employees and customers.

Provident will reopen its branches beginning July 6, it said.