Innovative technological capability and data-fuelled agility is often considered the realm of startups and other small, fast-moving businesses.
How is it then that RACV, a 120-year-old organisation with diversified interests and over 2 million members, managed to achieve exactly that?
RACV recently completed a three-year journey of transformation, replacing legacy, on-premises technology that slowed down almost every organisational process. The new tech is cloud-based and built on the Salesforce platform.
The result has been overwhelmingly positive for all stakeholders, said CIO Idris Shamsi during an ANZIIF-hosted webinar, where leaders from Salesforce, Bain & Company and RACV shared insights on digital transformation and the results of the new Customer Imperative in Financial Services report.
RACV’s transformation journey concluded about a year ago, and in that time RACV transitioned its member portal and core customer, product, billing and integration systems, Idris said.
Tapping into this new technology and capabilities has boosted customer experience, organisational efficiency, brand advocacy, opportunity identification, market intelligence, innovation, employee experience and much more, he added.
According to Idris, there were four drivers for this change program:
- To develop a single view of each customer: Previously, service agents regularly had to move between four or five systems to complete a single task.
- To better serve and anticipate members’ needs and experience: In turn, this would lead to the development of more intuitive, low-friction systems and processes for customers.
- To develop meaningful engagement: This would be accomplished through deep personalisation for each and every customer.
- To drive employee experience: Through greater efficiency, and therefore less repetitive, low-value work.
Customers trust financial services businesses with data
The Customer Imperative in Financial Services report, a collaboration between Salesforce and Bain & Company, revealed the powerful fact that over the past year, more customers than ever have developed greater trust in their insurance and banking institutions.
This fact, reflected in a 30% rise in net promoter score, also translates to greater expectations from customers around personalisation of service. Customers trust financial institutions with their personal data (65% of customers, in the case of insurance), and are happy for their insurers to use it to this end, the report revealed.
At RACV, that use of data has driven staff experience, which in turn has revolutionised member experience. It has not only led to dramatically lower average handling time and better conversion rates, but has also improved the customer experience at every touch point.
From pre-fill services online, to personalisation of messaging, and highly specific targeting of marketing and communications campaigns, the entire business is now able to shape its offerings around its customers.
“We have a process called our ‘internal product upload process’, which grabs data from all over the business to build up a really complete picture of what our members’ experiences and interactions are across all of the different channels, audiences and lines of business,” said Simon Baldock, RACV’s Head of Salesforce and Integration.
This data has been used to enhance every step of the customer journey, from SEO to help get people through the door, to the development of completely frictionless, intuitive experiences using human-centred design principles.
The Customer Imperative in Financial Services report said the biggest frustration for insurance and banking customers is when they begin a transaction in one channel, but then have to jump to another channel to complete their transaction.
Idris confirmed this was absolutely a frustration for RACV members, and one they’re working to rectify.
“So it’s as smooth as possible, we offer in-channel assistance. There is chat, there are prompts and guidance and the like, and before long there will be click-to-call for assistance, so you don’t actually have to exit the channel.”
This all requires recognition of the member through data insights and personally identifiable information (PII) across every channel, a crucial ingredient. Previously, without a central repository of all customer data, it was impossible for RACV to address this challenge. Since implementing a centralised CRM, they have been able to build a data repository that makes it easier to access customer data insights across the business.
It is now crucial to focus on customer experience
The key themes of the findings within the Customer Imperative in Financial Services report were fourfold.
- Financial institutions have recently made great progress in turning customers into advocates — 30% are now more likely to recommend their insurer.
- All consumers, regardless of age, now have a strong preference for digital channels.
- There is strong customer expectation of personalised offerings backed by data insights.
- COVID has shown what is possible, despite organisational barriers.
RACV has lived this experience, using their new data-driven capabilities to keep transactions within the customers’ channels of choice and to build out entirely new, less complex but more sophisticated digital experiences.
“Previously, three to four production releases per year was the norm at RACV,” Simon said.
“The combination of the business and digital transformation to Salesforce, as well as embedding the new operating model with agile delivery […] we’ve moved that to completing just shy of 60 production releases in the last 12 months.
“The huge improvement enabled by those factors has allowed us to really be nimble, in terms of demands in the digital space and non-digital space, as well […] It’s been hugely beneficial to be able to do that amount of change that rapidly and be that nimble in this environment.”
Want more insights into how insurers can create great customer experiences that build loyalty, inspire trust and transform customers into advocates? Get your copy of the Customer Imperative in Financial services report now.