HSBC sparks CRM with the Customer Management Assessment Tool (CMAT)
As competition in the finance sector continues to heat up, the idea of implementing savvy Customer Relationship Management (CRM) strategies has moved from the “nice-tohave” category onto the critical path for most companies. Analysts’ predictions have fuelled the fire. A worldrenowned firm predicts as much as a 900% increase in CRM spending in the industry over the next five years.
The complexities that suppliers face add even more impetus for action. Banks and financial entities now are managing more business and customer segments than ever before, juggling an increasing number of customer interaction channels, and evaluating an ever-growing cast of business partners. HSBC Bank plc, a prominent UK banking institution already known as
a leader in the CRM arena, recently decided to turn up the heat on its implementation of best practices in Customer Relationship Management. The institution chose to take a scientific approach to evaluating how well its strategies deliver by employing QCi’s Customer Management Assessment Tool (CMAT) licensed by IBM. With this tool, the bank was able to factually measure its current practices and compare the overall score against other corporations. Why CMAT and IBM? “We’ve known for a long time that we had good CRM systems in place, but we did not have any way to benchmark externally against other companies. By using CMAT, we brought many aspects of our systems, practices and resources together for careful evaluation,” explains Andy Ripley, senior manager, marketing development. Of the firms that have been involved with the CMAT study, HSBC ranked in the top ten percent. “Now, we want to work toward an even better score by developing more skills and even better capabilities to serve our customers,” notes Andy. The Customer Management Assessment Tool was applied to the retail and commercial banking areas of the bank
The HSBC team.
in the UK. CMAT provided the bank’s team with many recommendations that are being reviewed today. The tool helped the bank understand that although it has very proficient “front line” salespeople, further investment in sales systems might be considered, for example. “We already knew that CRM tools in the United Kingdom are advanced,” Andy says. “As our entire global group moves toward a more cohesive CRM approach, the CMAT study gives a consistent benchmark from which to measure ourselves locally and internationally.” What’s more, CMAT has the potential to be applied in other HSBC locations around the globe. “We are not treating this study as a one-off exercise,” he adds. “We can use CMAT as a worldwide methodology.” The CMAT study also helped the HSBC team focus the efforts of IBM around the institution’s data warehouse, its decision systems and methods, its channel integration and optimisation and some elements of processes and efficiency. The team categorises the CMAT study as a productive use of both their time and that of the IBM team. “Rather than talking about where our institution already is successful, we focused our efforts on CMAT to improve even more,” explains Andy. “Our UK CRM methodologies are being exported to other banks in the HSBC Group. The CMAT study has validated our strategy of adopting ‘best-of-breed’ systems and processes on a worldwide basis. Conducting a CMAT study was a very small purchase with big benefits,” he summarises.
About CMAT Graham Flower, head of customer management, initiated the study and he is currently responsible for CRM vision and strategy.
its customer management effectiveness against that of other companies. Additionally, CMAT can assess businesses that have CRM projects at any level of maturity. As businesses implement CRM strategies, and change their business models from traditional
“ Now, we talk to customers when we have identified a real need, the timing is right and we have something of...