Business Problem-Solving Case: Citizens National Bank Searches for a System Solution Case Study Questions
What was the initial problem that Mark Singleton was trying to solve at Citizens National? How well did he apply the four steps of problem solving?
A major part of Citizen National’s strategy for continuing growth was to implement customer relationship management (CRM) software. The CRM strategy targeted the bank’s two main contact points with customers: the bank’s call center and its sales force. The main goal for the implementation was to increase sales by raising the number of contacts relationship bankers were making and improving the tracking of these activities so the bank could learn more from them.
The four steps of problem solving include:
Define and understand the problem: it appears that Singleton defined and understood the problem of trying to get more information and use it more efficiently to expand sales •
Develop alternative solutions: it doesn’t appear as though Singleton or the outsourcer fulfilled this step very well. They only considered one CRM system and didn’t evaluate it well against organizational goals •
Choose the best solution: Obviously, if the previous step failed, so did this one. The union of old-fashioned business sensibility with powerful enterprise software was a mismatch almost immediately. The Siebel software was simply too rich in features. The bank spent an inordinate amount of time switching off features that hindered productivity. •
Implement the solution: Several things went wrong: Employees found the software to be too complicated. The extra navigation was confusing and inefficient. The users resisted the new system. It didn’t make sense for them to change their tried-and-true methods simply because new software required change. This points directly to the ‘user-designer communication gap’ issue. The bank also experienced compatibility issues between database formats. The bank spent...
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