Payology – The need to educate Generation Z
By Sarah Broughton
‘Payology’. Pay-what? A Generation Z kid may ask. ‘Payology’ is the official study of the payment ecosystem. With the current population of Gen Z at 23 million and growing rapidly, the industry could be doing more to educate the payments pioneers of the future and make ‘Payology’ a mandatory requirement of today’s educational curriculum.
There are three key reasons for this. Firstly, the growth witnessed in payment technologies and innovations is unquestionable, but whilst technology is surging forward the understanding of it in the world outside of the payments industry is unquestionably lower.
Secondly, payments are ‘pitched’ as being all about the consumer experience, if this is true then education around payments and the wider financial services world should be offered to the grassroots of our population. Our children are becoming disconnected from finance, as people don’t have the physical manifestations, for example, cash and bank statements, that used to help educate them.
And thirdly, we educate on the dangers of social media and the highly-sophisticated media and computer environment, but whilst Gen Z are internet savvy, they are not payment savvy and aware of the high-risk of cybersecurity and personal data breaches.
Fintech itself is responsible for making payments frictionless and easier, but with the removal of ‘friction’ there is more opportunity for mistakes. Whilst, there are promising pockets of payments educational driven by some high-profile financial institutions and influencers, including in-school work-shops and online programmes, the paytech power within this industry could campaign for so much more. There is lobbying for the financially excluded, for financial equality, but lobbying to teach vital payments knowledge for future generations is equally important.
‘Payology’ should be a lifestyle skill not a discovery when Gen Z and beyond leave formal education.