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Stress Testing your Bank's Operational Future

08 October 2010  |  2685 views  |  0

Fear of failure often leads to stagnation, and standing still is a very dangerous ploy in today’s highly competitive Banking market. Whether you are in a saturated market where the competition is to protect your existing customer base, and steal another’s, or you are in a growth market where the competition is about maximizing your share of the growing market, you will certainly need to make constant adjustments to succeed. These adjustments can be to processes, operational, resources, or in a number of other areas. Experience counts in making the right adjustments, and being a follower, instead of a leader, means you can make adjustments that a competitor has already proven will work. But if you want to be a leader, how do you maximize your chances to be successful in the changes you propose for your Banks operational environment.

With the right systems in place most banks have a great deal of valuable information available to help minimize the risk of operational changes. If you have deployed process based systems for your customer facing delivery platforms then you have data available on all operational activities that help you compete for Customers, accounts, and the revenue that they bring into your organization. Modern Business Activity Monitoring (BAM) will let you take this historic data of your operations and evaluate individual processes to find bottle necks in your operations, target areas that are ripe for automation, and highlight areas where you need to invest in staff training to improve efficiency. This focus on the individual processes detracts from the big picture planning on operational resources and environment that can have dramatic impact on your Bank’s operations.

Your Retail Banking BPM tool should provide the ability to take the historic data for an entire department, and then rerun it in a simulation that lets you test the results if operating under a new set of operational parameters. For example I should be able to specify running 6 months of a call center’s operation with reduced staff numbers to determine the impact that this would have had on SLA’s for various high impact processes. A Bank should be able to take the busy end of year data from the previous year and determine if extending open hours in prime Branches would have reduced service delays that lead to an increased number of customer complaints during this peak period of the year. Would putting on temporary staff instead of extending hours have had a greater positive impact than extending hours? If a Bank elects to invest in automating a step in a process, reducing its process time to close to zero, what flexibility in staffing levels does this give me without impact on current SLA’s for affected processes.

A process driven Retail Banking platform or solution is not just about the obvious up front automation and routing options, that gain you efficiency, but importantly about the control and management oversight that this system, and the richness of data that it generates, gives to the Management when contemplating strategic planning for the Banks operations.

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