The Era of Artificial Intelligence in Swedish Banking : Exploring Customer Attitudes Towards AI as a Substitute to Brick and Mortar Offices
Abstract: Background: The wave of Artificial Intelligence (AI) is marching on, replacing jobs and traditional services, and is predicted to be one of the biggest marketing trends in the close future. Four of the major Swedish banks have started to implement AI as a customer service channel. Simultaneously, the Swedish banking industry is experiencing an all-time low in customer satisfaction, where one of the main reasons is the diminishing number of local branches. Purpose: The purpose of this thesis is to explore the attitudes that customers have towards AI in customer service, as a substitute to local brick and mortar offices within the Swedish bank industry, as well as uncover any significant factors that could influence these attitudes. Method: This is a qualitative study of exploratory nature where five focus groups have been used to collect empirical data. A total sample of 26 participants, ranging from 20-55 years old, have partaken in the focus groups. Conclusion: Findings show that there mainly exists a negative attitude towards AI as a substitute to brick-and-mortar offices, but positive attitudes towards it as a complement. Factors that influence the attitudes were found to be Convenience, Perceived Usefulness, Perceived Ease of Use, Trust, Risk and Social influence. Awareness and Prior Technological Experience were found to not have great influence on customer attitudes.
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