An ICAN Research study commissioned by Ailleron in 2023 shows that leasing customers eagerly await user-friendly and innovative solutions, emphasizing the increasing importance of digitalization within the leasing sector. At the same time, in less than a year, we have witnessed the dynamic development of generative artificial intelligence (Generative AI). How can leasing stay ahead in the digital revolution to meet the current needs of mobile users? Patrycja Leszek-Królikowska, UX/UI Business Unit Director, and Paweł Stach, LeaseTech Product Owner, are sharing a guide on winning the mobile shift and explaining why leasing companies shouldn’t miss this chance to bridge the gap with other industries and amaze their customers with an enhanced service.
Do leasing companies show more interest in mobile applications?
Paweł Stach: Indeed, we are receiving inquiries from the market. Based on our discussions with clients, leasing companies seem to have overcome their previous skepticism towards developing mobile applications for customers, which was prevalent just a few years ago. Both the most prominent and smaller players are actively developing such software, and some initial solutions have already entered the European market.
Patrycja Leszek-Królikowska: Certainly, as Ailleron UXLab, we are actively engaged in shaping the application concept. We run workshops for our clients and provide guidance throughout the entire partnership, beginning with consultations on the essential features an application should encompass. During our collaboration, we also carry out testing, start initial client verifications, gather feedback, validate ideas, and fine-tune the concepts. As we move forward, we later pass the baton to our fellow software developers.
How does designing mobile apps for leasing companies’ clients differ from creating banking apps? Are there apparent differences?
PLK: The design process, including the various stages of the Design Sprint, such as empathy, synthesis, prototyping, and validation, aligns with the practices in the banking and e-commerce sectors. However, it’s challenging as there are limited benchmarks to reference. It requires even more thinking outside the box and seeking inspiration and expertise from other industries to design innovative solutions.
PS: Regarding technology and processes, there are indeed noticeable differences, just as in terms of the app’s intended business value and customer-oriented objectives. The unique advantages and features should entice customers to download and install the app on their phones. In the leasing industry, this task proves to be notably more challenging.
Mobile app development workshop led by Ailleron in 2023 at eLeasing Day, one of the biggest Polish leasing conferences organized by the Polish Leasing Association
What factors distinguish well-designed leasing applications for small and large companies?
PLK: In terms of the user interface, large companies prioritize a broader range of products and their categorization. Additionally, they focus on incorporating features for attaching contracts, completing product applications, signing orders, managing permissions and user groups, and interface scalability for handling larger volumes of data.
PS: The profiles of the leasing company and its customers hold significance. Reflecting each company’s customers’ distinct needs and requirements is essential for the mobile application’s interface.
What app features are customers looking for?
PLK: The widespread trend of Super Apps observed in the banking sector is also reflected in the expectations of leasing customers. Our clients express a need to use a custom app for various purposes, including:
- booking service appointments and tire changes,
- scheduling business trips,
- making payments for tolls and parking,
- checking penalty points,
- accessing services like consultations, business advisory, and a knowledge base.
The leasing industry holds great potential for value-added services. It’s crucial to analyze and stay updated on evolving customer demands, ensuring that the chosen VASs truly meet their needs and deliver the anticipated benefits.
Can a well-designed leasing app UX extend customer lifecycle and enhance loyalty?
PLK: Certainty! Especially if the customer had a memorable positive experience, gained access to beneficial offers, got fast processing of the request, received a real-time preview of application forms, and notifications on important deadlines and industry updates. Equally vital is the access to a wide range of additional services and an in-app Contact Center to receive quick answers to the most urgent queries.
If the app is well tailored to my needs, I’d be thrilled to revisit it and recommend not only the mobile solution itself but also the leasing company behind it, mainly owing to their outstanding and efficient service, which enhances the overall experience.
At Ailleron, prioritizing end-users needs and upholding a customer-centric approach are crucial for delivering best-in-class services to our clients. One of them is Santander Leasing.
„Santander Leasing chose the eBOK24 portal developed by Ailleron for 24/7 self-service to enhance post-sales support for leasing customers via digital channels. To ensure the best end-user journey, the service portal had to meet all necessary security requirements while maintaining the highest UX/UI standards. The project involved simplifying the login process, providing access to download e-invoices and pay by the payment gateway, making electronic signatures accessible and making self change leasing or loan agreement repayment. After implementing the LeaseTech Customer Platform by the Ailleron team, Santander Leasing saw an increase in online payments. As many as 95% of active clients have an eBOK24 account, with 92% of all eBOK24 users actively logging into the portal”.
Director of Digital Service Development Office
What built-in tools and features are an absolute must-have when it comes to mobile applications for leasing companies?
PS: Among the essential tools and features I would point out:
- Access to contract and document specifics
- A repayment schedule
- Invoice payment status overview (paid and overdue)
- Quick payments
- Immediate Contact Center support
- Damage reporting capability
What features and tools do clients usually request for their business-oriented application design? Can you give a few examples?
PLK: Currently, all inquiries are centered around transferring the entire functionality of the Electronic Customer Support Portal to the mobile app. However, there are far greater possibilities at hand. Leasing companies should take advantage of this opportunity to develop a mobile app that goes beyond the existing features, enabling them to stand out and offer the best possible customer experience. In the Polish market alone, around one million lessees are eagerly awaiting the market breakthrough!
What factors will accelerate the adoption of mobile solutions in the leasing industry?
PS: Digitization is now a requirement, not merely a passing trend. Due to today’s user habits, mobile apps are an absolute must. If customers can’t download the leasing company’s app and carry out the intended tasks within it, they may conclude that the lessor doesn’t want to meet their expectations. As a result, they may choose another provider and recommend to their relatives to change to one that offers them multiple contact channels and quick service.