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What if bank advisors had the right tools for effective customer relationship via email ?

What if bank advisors had
the right tools for effective
customer relationship via email ?

Nicolas Marcoin

Product Marketing Manager

At a time in which digitalisation is shaping customer relationship, companies are deploying new digital channels. Conversational chat, instant messaging applications, video and mobile applications are regularly cited as new modes of communication between consumers and brands. But what about email, classified as a digital channel but considered by many observers as a traditional channel with low growth? 

 

Email, a prevalent communication channel in the banking industry

Nowadays, email exchange is still predominant in the banking industry. The nature of this asynchronous communication channel, and the possibility of exchanging documents as attachments provide flexibility and ease. Thus, 43% of network bank customers mainly contact their advisor by email. The current context, which favours remote contact, has accelerated exchanges via this channel. Our banking customers have seen e-mail volume increase by 25% and have not experienced a drop: this trend, which emerged during the pandemic, seems to be one of the new uses to be addressed! 

How can we ensure that banks deliver on their promise for fast and quality responses?

Nowadays receiving and sending emails are daily actions well acknowledged by advisors. But what is the impact when the number of emails accumulates? How do you prioritise email management within an organisation?  How to quickly optimise response time? 

To improve the efficiency of e-mail processing, many companies send e-mails directly to a dedicated department. However, in some companies, there are often specific departments that do not handle the entire request. How can the response development be shared between different departments and ensure that the response is delivered within an acceptable timeframe for the customer? 

 

The choice of a customer interaction management platform

To meet these needs, a solution would be to change the organisation, rules and skills of the advisers while keeping the individual messaging tool. While these actions may bring short-term and local benefits, they do not ensure maximum efficiency in the long term, as the responsibility lies mainly with the organisation and processes that are difficult to monitor. 

The second solution that banking companies are turning to is the implementation of a customer interaction management platform.


Here are 5 good reasons to choose a customer interaction management tool to handle emails in bank branches 

 

1. Prioritise and route the request to the right person to answer it

Helping the advisor in identifying priority emails is key. This requires an efficient system capable of prioritising the emails handled by the advisor. Multiple parameters must be taken into account: the reason, the customer profile, the number of recent exchanges, the backup advisor, etc... 

In addition to this priority established by the company, the advisor must also be able to assign himself/herself high priority emails. Indeed, nothing replaces an advisor for his advanced knowledge of his customers. The right equation is therefore a mix of priorities managed by the system and by the advisor himself.  Choose a tool that will give you control over prioritisation strategies. Flexibility is essential to maintain a high level of service while adapting to different contexts.

2. Delegating and collaborating for better quality responses 

In an email, there are often several requests on different areas of expertise. The advisor must then seek the help of specialised colleagues either by transferring the request or by requesting their assistance.

The advisor should be able to carry out these operations with in-house or external experts. 

An email interaction management tool is able to provide support systems that will ensure a complete and consistent response to the customer. Ergonomics and easy usage are essential to the advisors’ effectiveness


3. Knowing the customer's context to personalise responses 

A customer does not only communicate via email. Different channels are used - it is estimated that 3 or 4 different channels per customer are used (source: BVA observatoires des services clients 2019). 

It is essential for bank advisors to have a consolidated history of all interactions. Quite often they still have to manipulate different tools to find information. This results in time wastage or inconsistent responses. 

Customer follow-up is generally offered off-line: the adviser consulting the customer's file has a view of all the exchanges with the bank. It is now important to have this follow-up in real time through notifications. As soon as a customer enters an advisor's portfolio, the advisor receives real-time notifications on all exchanges with the bank, regardless of the channel used. In the context of email and for banking professions where customer excellence is a must, this allows the advisor to proactively follow up on their customers. Providing a personalised and rapid response is now easier.  


4. Provide a tool to assist advisers 

The advisor retains an indispensable role in the customer's relationship with his or her bank, since 74% of them say they are ready to change banks if they feel that their advisor is not able to respond effectively to the request !

It is therefore essential that advisors have the right tools to be effective in this channel. 

The solutions proposed by Worldline allow advisors to have suggested answers related to the request.  This reduces processing time and improves the quality of the response. 

 

5. Monitor indicators to ensure the quality of interaction

With the emergence of more interactive digital channels, customers expect almost immediate responses regardless of the channel. The response time can have a strong influence on their satisfaction and, if the waiting time is too long, it can damage the relationship with their advisor.

The interaction management tools offer numerous dashboards. Follow-up by advisor, follow-up by branch, understanding customer needs, many indicators are available. They are essential for monitoring activity, ensuring that objectives are met and also detecting possible improvements in processing. 

Convinced that an interaction management tool is a lever for optimising customer relationship by email within bank branches ?