Banking and insurance: digital transformation for improved customer relationships

In the past few years, the banking and insurance sectors have been seriously disrupted by the emergence of new competitors such as the big American and Chinese tech companies, widespread digitization and ever changing legislation (most recently the March 16, 2019 PACTE law in France). With all these changes, it’s critical for companies in these sectors to react and adapt. Their future will be built on customer relationships, which will require much more than just creating a new CRM strategy. Such change involves completely transforming the role of CRM and sometimes even company culture.

Industry challenges: customers and data

Banks and insurers have to position themselves as true partners for their customers and respond to new expectations and consumption habits. The ability to track customers in real time is the holy grail each company is seeking. To do this successfully, these companies must deal with a number of issues that some are already attempting to solve through various initiatives.

The biggest issues with data…

The banking and insurance sectors have to tackle four major challenges:

  • managing and processing ever increasing volumes of data while still providing high-quality customer service
  • providing access to customer data from all devices so that the customer can get immediate, personalized responses
  • improving cybersecurity to keep pace with multiple data exchanges, rapid technological changes and customer use of mobile devices
  • complying with legal requirements (such as GDPR and Privacy Shield) that regulate data management at financial institutions

…and initiatives to deal with them

Innovation is the key component of transformation solutions designed to respond to these issues. And to put the customer back in their rightful place as the main focus of service, employees must be relieved of low value added tasks so they can refocus on their advisory role. To do this, some banks are turning to Artificial Intelligence. This is the case at Crédit Mutuel and Orange Bank that are using Watson, an AI system developed by IBM. At Crédit Mutuel, AI helps advisors via dynamic FAQs, a sales action recommendation engine, and automated email sorting and replies. At Orange Bank, AI has been used to deploy a chatbot.

On the insurance side, we have companies like MAIF which has reinvented the business and adapted to new norms by offering peer-to-peer insurance and on-demand insurance models for the first time in France through its Altima lab.

And just like the insurtechs that are happily disrupting the industry’s value chain, more traditional players have invested in cutting edge technology built on blockchain. For example, AXA offers automatic insurance with direct compensation for airline delays. And MS Amlin has set up insurance contract automation for marine merchandise transfer in war zones: blockchain data enables the insurer to use real-time pricing based on risks at the exact time when the boat enters a dangerous area.

When you look at these big challenges, and keep in mind the ultimate goal of better satisfying customers, it’s no wonder the banking and insurance industries have certain expectations when implementing their transformation projects. However, these customer satisfaction projects can’t be successfully completed without first and foremost making real changes within the internal teams that are directly impacted by these transformations.

Challenges for insurers and banks

In order to deal with customer and data challenges, it’s essential to put the focus of a digital transformation squarely on the interaction between employee and customer. You have to rethink CRM strategies and distribution methods using technology in a smart way. But there’s more. A digital transformation must also redefine business processes and management methods.

To reach customer satisfaction objectives, companies must center the process on the employee, who will logically see their work evolve in order to provide optimal customer support. Their added value will be refocused on their role as an advisor who can handle every aspect of increasingly complex projects that require adoption of new practices. The same person must gather information, analyze the situation, evaluate benefits and risks, and create estimates. All of this data must all be analyzed together in order to offer the best solution to the customer.

Positions will be redefined and administrative activity will be abandoned in favor of commercial proactivity. Positions will become cross-functional, requiring more independence and responsibility, as well as hybrid skills to enable an employee to respond to commercial, technical, administrative, relational, political, legal and even emotional challenges.

Logically, the managerial function must also be adjusted in relationship to positions they oversee. The manager’s role will evolve into coaching to serve their team, with information and skill sharing becoming the frontline of a new organization. In this way, hierarchical silos will be broken down and the move from one business area to another will be facilitated by dialog in a mindset of flexibility and collaboration.

In short, successfully positioning an organization to be aligned with customer satisfaction requires paying as much attention to the employee experience as to the customer experience.

Faced with these radical transformation needs, companies can’t just push the “deploy project” button to focus on the customer. Employees have to participate in the process and adapt to the profound impacts digital technology will have on their practices, their positions and their tasks.

Key factors for engaging employees in the success of these transformations

One thing unique to the banking and insurance sectors is the size of their networks—motivating employees is even more complex since the transformation must be completed in a standardized way throughout the company (customer support, field sales force, agents). This motivation is nearly impossible without using the right process tools and implementing multiple engagement methods while providing a unique employee experience.

InsideBoard created the first digital change management platform based on Artificial Intelligence in response to these needs.

Providing ongoing, personalized motivation

To successfully complete a transformation, companies must continually motivate each employee to adopt practices and support their performance. This makes the employee the focus and the levers used to mobilize them must be inspired by everyday consumer experiences, such as a community dynamic, learning that’s entertaining, a need for recognition, collective competition, and more. These levers maximize employee and manager engagement over the long term, beyond silos.

In order for this to work, each employee must develop a personal interest in the transformation project, and their motivation must be fueled in a personalized way throughout their transition by creating challenges, highlighting what they’ve learned, and showcasing their progress or their role in the transformation’s success. This enables them to solidify their expertise and confirm their skills through a process that creates sustainable new practices.

Defining objectives and measuring success

To enable all teams to be completely aligned, objectives for practice outcomes must be set and measured all throughout the transformation project. This requires outlining relevant and transparent Key Success Indicators (qualitative or quantitative) that everyone has access to. For example, qualitative indicators can measure things like employee behavior when faced with the new distribution of tasks (sharing information, helping each other, acting independently, taking responsibility, getting involved), progress on customer relationships and expertise, and mastery of digital tools. Quantitative performance could be based on revenue growth, case file processing time, sales and marketing ROI, etc.

Finally, setting up KPIs for success activates internal collaboration. The banking and insurance sectors, which have numerous communities within their teams spread over various countries, is particularly interested in using this diversity as a lever to accelerate their transformations. In order to engage these communities, the InsideBoard platform uses Key Success Indicators that enable companies to motivate their communities every day. Learn more about Key Success Indicators.

Setting up an integrated approach

Before, change management was limited to training and top-down communication. With InsideBoard, companies can now implement an integrated approach focused on the employee and built on company success indicators to successfully manage all their transformation projects (CRM, Digital Workplace, ERP, operational efficiency, culture, etc.).

InsideBoard is a key part of transformation in the banking and insurance sectors. Using a recommendation engine built on Artificial Intelligence, the platform allows companies to implement an individual and collective transformation process within their entire network at the same time, supporting adoption of new practices by integrating the key, inseparable factors for success.

This allows each employee to progress at their own rhythm in an entertaining way that highlights their progress towards attaining the success objectives related to their role. They absorb new tasks in stages to reach the expected level of expertise and performance, leading to optimal customer relationships.