The rise of more agile End to End methods to measure and deliver more efficient process and productivity within Financial Services
Whilst it may not be a surprise, the focus on Productivity was a major feature of the latest set of Monetary Statistics. The UK lags the US and Germany by 30 percentage points, France by 20 and Italy by 8.
Productivity is normally associated with manufacturing as evidenced by Philip Hammond’s example of the German Car worker making in 4 days what takes us 5 in the UK. Productivity is a vital indicator to drive up efficiency, reduce complexity, and improve service to the customer. It is a key indicator of the background health of the economy.
It is also vital in Financial Services for these very same points. Financial Services firms all want to automate and simplify processes, give a better level of service to customers and reduce their operating costs. Improving productivity and focusing on value added effort is the focus. The easier and more efficient it is for businesses and individuals to set up and transact in Financial Services, the more it helps support a thriving economy.
Which is why it is surprising it is not measured well in the sector – either on an institutional or departmental level. The traditional emphasis has been on functional competence or Service Level Agreements. These mask the true productivity of the organisation or indeed a department. A recent Limehouse analysis showed that 7 out of every 10 calls into a call centre were unnecessary if unproductive, and simplified processes had been established in the first place. Onboarding new customers remains a tedious process.
So why is this? Partly it is down to measurement. Traditional reporting feeds are slow and functionally-based. Cross fertilisation of work is difficult and not easy to identify.
Limehouse is starting to address this. By developing automated ways of measuring cost and productivity, we are able to give the industry a more precise picture of where productivity is lost and the impact this has on cost and service. With real information on an end-to-end scale, firms can measure the true productivity of its workforce and focus on where the major gaps in servicing customers take place.
This gives us the ability to gather insight into the dynamics of the relationships between channels, customer behaviour and cost.
End-to-end, however, is traditionally seen in the confines of a particular process or product, and changes constrained by the systems and processes originally built to control or manage them.
However, we are starting to see in the market solutions which allow financial institutions to deploy more agile ways of working with their own customers which are both truly end-to-end and have a transformational impact on productivity.
Rather than rely on Robotic sweeping, which has an incremental effect, new cloud-based rules based engines bring the capability to build ‘new’ processes with features which tie together customers, operations and third party suppliers.
Whilst this in itself is not new, what is innovative is the ability to do so without heavy human interaction which has a significant impact on productivity and the effectiveness of the whole chain.
The benefits to measuring and then applying new principles to Customer Journey Improvement can be significant. In one of our recent initiatives, Data Gathering time for casework has been reduced from several hours with a high percentage of inaccuracy to several minutes with a more than 99% level of accuracy.
Apart from the natural productivity gain, this allows the bank to focus on a ‘frictionless’ interaction with its customers delivering the type of gain the UK Economy needs.