Ready, Set, Bank: Helping Seniors With Online Banking

Through video tutorials, seniors gain the confidence to manage their money online and enhance their financial well-being


Learning new technology is important for all of us, but it’s especially important for seniors during this time. As the world continues to respond to the coronavirus (COVID-19), online banking has moved from a nice-to-have to the primary way of managing finances. 

Before the pandemic, very few older Americans were taking advantage of online banking – despite the convenience, enhanced control and consumer protection it offered. 

To better understand the reasons why older adults are more hesitant to adopt services on the digital front, Capital One sat down with Tom Kamber, Founder and Executive Director of OATS (Older Adults Technology Services). OATS has taught more than 40,000 seniors on technology topics ranging from “What is the Internet?” to “What is Digital Entrepreneurship?”. A few years ago, they helped Capital One develop Ready, Set, Bank™ – a free educational tool designed to help older adults bridge the digital divide and leverage online banking to better manage their money and enhance their financial well-being. 

Understanding What's Possible With Online Banking

“In America, between 25 and 50% of older adults are disconnected or not online at all. There are several reasons behind this, including uncertainty about technology, lack of access, and safety concerns,” said Kamber. “The pandemic is forcing seniors and other vulnerable populations to need to be online all of a sudden. It has inevitably shone a light into a space many industries previously ignored or weren’t acknowledging to the extent they should have been.”

Capital One recognizes the importance of ensuring all people have the skills necessary to successfully manage their personal finances. When we partnered with OATS, we wanted to create a generic, non-branded instruction tool that was easy to use, engaging, and helpful to older adults with any level of computer knowledge.

“The web-based program includes 44 micro-learning videos designed to equip older adults with the skills they need to manage their money online,” said Kamber. “Things like navigating mobile banking apps, creating alerts for account activity and protecting identity from fraud. Viewers can watch the entire series or select individual videos to learn new skills.”

Given the timeliness of this program, we’ll be sharing a subset of our Ready, Set, Bank videos, highlighting what’s possible with online banking. A Spanish language version, Listos, Clic, Avance, and a demo site that enables seniors to learn and adopt digital banking is also available.

“In spite of our current circumstances, I’m hopeful the percentage of seniors who bank digitally will increase dramatically during- and post-pandemic,” said Kamber. “Our ultimate goal is for seniors to be digitally empowered and obtain a higher level of financial knowledge.”

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