The truth about PFM


PFM (Personal Financial Management) has been in the market for more than a decade now. In its early days PFM didn’t receive much attention from the market. Then, after Mint.com’s success, PFM was resurrected.

Since that time, various research findings confirmed that users are ready to embrace PFM. The market got the signal. Many analysts and digital channel managers believed that PFM was the next big thing in online banking and that it would be adopted by banks in a very short time. In 2010, Online Banking Report even quoted that: “Personal Finance Management (PFM) functionality is the highest potential ROI project for retail financial institutions to implement”.
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Lipstick on the PFM Pig?


In an industry that is sometimes slow to innovate, Personal Financial Management (PFM) is one of the few banking applications where innovation has outpaced consumer demand. A ‘hot’ topic for over a decade, the ability to help consumers better manage their money through applied analytics, contextual design and visual tools has provided a battleground for financial institutions and direct-to-consumer applications.

With a quest to be at the center of account holder’s lives, developers of PFM applications are moving from add-on applications to integrated solutions that can help define lifestyle segments. At the same time, the definition of PFM has evolved to include everything from basic visualizations to advanced engagement tools.

The question remains however . . . will these innovations capture the consumer’s attention or simply be lipstick on the PFM pig?
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Lipstick on the PFM Pig?


In an industry that is sometimes slow to innovate, Personal Financial Management (PFM) is one of the few banking applications where innovation has outpaced consumer demand. A ‘hot’ topic for over a decade, the ability to help consumers better manage their money through applied analytics, contextual design and visual tools has provided a battleground for financial institutions and direct-to-consumer applications.
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Define PFM


The core of the issue here is simple: There is no clear definition about what PFM is (and isn’t). There is no common understanding — among bankers or consumers — about what PFM is. I don’t have research to back me up, but I’m willing to bet that if you showed a representative sample of consumers a list of companies that included Mint, BillGuard, Lemon, Credit Karma, and Manilla, and asked: “Which of these companies offers a “pure” PFM?” you would get blank stares from 98% of them.

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Persönliches Finanz Management? Vertrauen zählt!


Persönliches Finanz Management setzt sich als Trend im Angebot der Retail Banken weltweit mehr und mehr durch. Während die meisten Menschen ihre Bank nicht lieben, so vertrauen sie ihr doch hinsichtlich der eigenen Finanzen, ein nicht zu unterschätzender Wettbewerbsvorteil gegenüber unabhängigen PFM Anbietern.
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Wie kann die Adaption von PFM gesteigert werden?


Persönliches Finanz Management ist auf dem Vormarsch. Immer mehr Banken bieten es ihren Kunden als zusätzlichen Service an. Die Annahme durch die Kunden ist jedoch sehr unterschiedlich. Dabei ist eine hohe Adaption Voraussetzung für das Heben der positiven Effekte.
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