Instant card issuance builds immediate value in the eyes of the consumer, and also helps them feel like a valued customer, potentially increasing their card usage rate and extending the longevity of the business relationship.

On-the-spot card issuance and PIN selection lets banks immediately get their card into the hands of the customer, reducing the complexity of logistics, card re-issuance costs and lost customer spend.

The average wait time for a new credit or debit card to arrive in the hands of a customer is between 7-10 business days. This delay can create friction in the customer experience, as they crave simplicity and speed, and because it can be an alarming experience to be left without a practical way to access their money, in the case of a replacement card. A slowly issued card may result in that payment method no longer being the top-of-wallet choice, may have lasting effects on spending habits or, worst of all, and may end up in the unopened mail drawer.

Instant issuance can improve the in-branch banking experience for customers in the digital era, while also raising opportunities for financial institutions across new areas of business. Instant issuance technology allows banks to work more closely with service providers interested in increasing their cardholder membership by providing on-the-spot credit checks for instant issuance of loyalty-based credit cards.

Finally, instant issuance means banks are not limited to solely issuing cards in-branch. They also have the opportunity to issue rewards cards onsite at stores or events, directly increasing the activation rates of their issued credit cards.

The upcoming migration to EMV requires a system upgrade anyway. While banks transition to EMV instant issuance, it is a perfect time to more broadly consider what it brings to the future of banking. From the customer perspective, instant issuance is a quicker and more painless way to obtain a new card and PIN. For banks, instant issuance offers scalability for any size financial institution; increased cardholder satisfaction and deepened affinity for the relationship with their financial institution, by rapidly and conveniently initializing or replacing access to their funds; increased revenues through higher activation rates and immediate card usage; and operational savings by reducing the use of postage and mailing supplies, as used with replacement cards and PIN mailers

Through instant issuance, banks and their partners can reach a broader, more immediate audience, attract new customers and develop supplemental services that are aligned with the frequent and instant purchase behaviors of their current and future cardholders.

Philippe Benitez is vice president of business development at Gemalto.