As any player in the financial services industry knows, time is money and financial services companies need to be on their toes. This is certainly the case for Curve Securities, a national advisory service that helps ‘middle-market’ investors – companies, fund managers, credit unions and councils – to invest surplus funds in term deposits. With 800 clients and nearly $3 billion funds under management, Curve Securities has recorded meteoric growth since it first hit the financial industry in 2009.
When Curve Securities first started up, Excel spreadsheets and Word documents were the norm. Excel was used as a database to track and measure business performance, and to monitor client portfolios. Complicated formulas were created and the risks of losing valuable data were growing daily.
It was also slow. Managing Director Andrew Murray points out “In the early days it was myself and one other employee. We had about $200 million on deposit and were both at full capacity.”
The switch to Salesforce changed all that. In the first 12 months of moving to the cloud-based platform, Curve Securities grew its portfolio to $520 million on deposit. Today, with just six employees, they have close on $3 billion.
Murray contracted a freelance Salesforce expert to manage the initial migration of the Excel database into the Sales Cloud. This meant moving the entire database of deals – 800 at that time – to Salesforce. Many custom fields were created, complete with tailored validation rules and workflows. Email templates were built and linked to these fields, to streamline and speed up the communications process.
Various add-on AppExchange applications further enhance the system. Conga Composer improves the efficiency of filling out forms. A future implementation, the the ShoreTel VoIP phone system, will integrate to trigger client information as soon as a call comes in.
“Getting it built right from the start made all the difference. Salesforce is incredibly flexible and malleable,” says Murray.
The vast majority of work done by the Curve Securities team fits into a 2-hour window in the middle of each day. Driven by the wholesale benchmark rate, which comes out at 10am each day, the banks then set their rates and release them to the public. Curve Securities must respond immediately, communicating these rates to clients and waiting for their investment decisions.
“For us to help as many clients as possible during this window, we need to be extremely efficient and proactive. Salesforce has been crucial in enabling us to seize opportunities and deliver a high level of service to clients,” says Murray.
Email is a crucial tool at Curve Securities, used to send rates and term deposit opportunities to clients every morning. These aren’t mass-market ‘push’ emails that the recipients are only vaguely interested in. Instead, many are highly anticipated emails that get opened as soon as they land in the inbox – clients rely on them to make significant financial decisions.
Now, ExactTarget and Sales Cloud work together to instantaneously send vital information to clients. For example, if a bank approaches Curve Securities with a request to raise $30 million for in term deposits opportunity, Curve Securities can get an email out to clients using dynamic targeting within a matter of minutes – compared to quarter of an hour, which is how long it would take previously.
Murray now says that they are nowhere near to utilising their capacity – all thanks to Salesforce. “With Salesforce, there’s really no cap on our growth,” he says.
“With Salesforce, we can maintain operational efficiencies and uphold a high level of service in these new areas. It gives us the ability to plan with certainty when moving into these new areas,” he says.