As digital transformation continues to take the financial industry by storm, the importance of providing customers with seamless and accessible services, software, and technology is growing exponentially. However, shifting focus more onto customer satisfaction can lead to the need for more advanced solutions that can result in heightened operational costs.

The ServiceNow platform offers a streamlined and intuitive interface and system that allows banks and other financial institutions to transform their processes and services to be more people-centric. Implementing ServiceNow can result in greater empowerment and involvement of customers through heightened automation and agility.

Employing the ServiceNow platform is a fantastic first step towards providing greater value to your customers and establishing an interface that provides better service and communication between both professionals and customers. In this article, we will discuss the basics of a ServiceNow implementation and what your financial institution can gain from it.

Understanding ServiceNow and How to Employ the Platform

ServiceNow is a cloud-based platform that helps to create an overarching managed workflow and system. The service model of ServiceNow is focused on helping to identify the cause and solution of issues users on the platform may encounter and includes many features that aid in improving communication and collaboration within a financial team.

When it comes to implementing the ServiceNow platform, there are several considerations to keep in mind, as a successful implementation requires both technological and financial expertise.

The basics of implementation include:

  • Defining clear short and long-term goals to help identify implementation priorities.
  • Obtaining a foundational configuration management database (CMDB) that helps to ensure processes operate smoothly and correctly.
  • Staying ahead of the curve by introducing new governance, training, or organizational change at an early stage to help build and drive adoption momentum.

Thoroughness is arguably the most important factor when it comes to a successful ServiceNow implementation. ServiceNow is a highly adaptable platform and its flexibility and adjustability make it able to be employed according to each individual financial institution’s specific needs.

Workflows and Custom Development

ServiceNow offers a wide array of products and tools that can help to support, manage, and even design workflows. Not only that, but the platform is able to work with legacy systems in order to better allow for thorough integrations.

There are many different products and tools that can be accessed through the ServiceNow platform, including:

  • Predictive modeling using AI (artificial intelligence) and machine learning
  • Anomaly detection
  • Performance forecasting
  • Peer benchmarking

Additionally, within the dashboard of ServiceNow, users can even build their own applications, allowing them to create the exact custom developments that fit their specific needs. This also allows for a number of custom functionalities, including service portals, knowledge bases, and more.

Utilizing Managed Services

The reality of implementing ServiceNow is that there are many tools and functionalities to keep in mind throughout the implementation process. Platforms such as these provide a high level of customization for both front-end and back-end processes, making it extremely useful albeit a bit overwhelming.

However, the advantages of working with ServiceNow far outweigh the initial hassle that comes with implementation and integration. Luckily, these crucial steps for getting set up on the platform do not have to be achieved without help.

Managed services, such as those offered here at CPQi, give financial professionals access to a cross-trained team with enormous amounts of experience to back up their credentials. Having a strong managed services team on standby is crucial not only for implementation, but for continued success with ServiceNow as well.

Automate Processes for Greater Efficiency

Automation is a major component of what makes utilizing ServiceNow so advantageous. When a financial institution operates according to organizational and departmental silos, the efficiency of an IT department is likely to suffer. This is due to a lack of clear communication, unified goals, and a centralized system where data can be accessed easily and universally.

The ServiceNow platform is designed to aid in each and every IT request that pops up along the way. Plus, ServiceNow can handle both requests and solutions all from within the same platform and system. The need for paper-based and manual processes are thus largely – if not entirely – eliminated thanks to centralized automation that can link common controls and carry out many necessary tasks.

Here are a few examples of tasks that can be automated through ServiceNow:

  • Account management services
  • Common issue resolutions
  • Bank lending
  • Billing issues
  • Complaint management
  • Detection of disruptions
  • Provisioning of assets

This kind of automation helps to keep both back- and front-end processes and interfaces running smoothly. Moreover, automation lends itself towards greater efficiency when dealing with IT problems, allowing staff members to spend less time wrestling with technology and more time focused on customer satisfaction.

The Role of a Single System

Being a cloud-based platform means that ServiceNow will store and organize, as well as carry out automated tasks, all from one centralized digital location. This sort of single-system setup allows for financial institutions to greatly streamline their processes and even connect better with other branches.

According to ServiceNow:

Having everything recorded in a single system provides a hub to assign and track work, both within compliance, and across business areas. It acts as a core repository for reference information on a specific regulation, holds knowledge articles, FAQs, etc.”

Implementing ServiceNow will result in many advantages that are born out of this single system, including:

  • Clearer and more direct channels of communication, both within a bank’s working environment and between professionals and customers.
  • Greater accessibility to data and information by both staff and customers
  • Improved self-service options – enabled through improved automation – that can help to better the customer experience.

Measure and Leverage Employee Skills

Using ServiceNow allows banks and other financial institutions to not only increase their customer satisfaction, but to improve the experience of their employees as well. A major ServiceNow functionality to take advantage of is the ability to create employee portals where they can take an inventory of their skills and measure those against their peers.

An employee portal that focuses on employee skills can greatly assist in identifying individuals or departments that may be facing productivity issues or other problems. It can also serve as a point of reference when starting new projects for finding the employees with the most relevant skills that meet the project requirements.

Plus, a bank’s staff will need to spend less of their time planning for and responding to incidents that may arise. Employees can communicate much more efficiently through ServiceNow and can work in congruence with AI to achieve much higher levels of productivity.

Creating Employee Portals and Focusing on Employee Satisfaction

Employee portals created through ServiceNow provide banks with the ability to take a true inventory of their top talents. This can help especially in times where a bank’s operations need to be scaled up or down, potentially requiring talent to be consolidated accordingly.

ServiceNow can aide in both identifying talent as well as improving the initial satisfaction of newly onboarded employees. The employee experience is arguably just as important as the customer experience, as employees are often the ones on the frontlines and in direct communication with the customers.

The reality of today’s financial industry is that these kinds of clear and direct lines of communication are essential for boosting productivity and ensuring satisfaction across the board with both employees and customers.

Achieve Operational Excellence

Operational excellence lies at the core of a financial institution’s success. When it comes to digital transformation, operational excellence has been a top priority for the most successful banks when implementing ServiceNow at their own institution.

Here are just a few quick stats from the 2020 IDC Info Snapshot (sponsored by ServiceNow) that demonstrate the importance of operational excellence for financial institutions:

  • Banks spend around 50 percent of transformational initiative investments on improvements to operations.
  • 33 percent of the average budget spent on digital transformation is used for operational risk management.
  • 15 percent of the average bank budget for digital transformation is spent on improving customer experience.

There are a number of ways in which banks can greatly boost their operational excellence when implementing ServiceNow, including:

  • Reducing Operational Costs: Utilizing cloud-based platforms, such as ServiceNow for banks, enables businesses to place much less reliance on a large IT department. Traditionally, achieving a strong digital presence would require costly on-site hardware. Comparatively, ServiceNow provides a consolidated and unified platform that can integrate with old legacy systems while also greatly reducing IT costs.
  • Improving Digital Credibility: Maintaining a strong digital presence can be tricky, and achieving well-trusted digital credibility can be even more difficult. With financial matters especially, customers want to feel secure that their information is being kept safe. ServiceNow offers a reputable and recognizable platform that can help to improve consumer trust in a financial institution’s digital transformation.
  • Streamlining Customer Experiences: Ensuring that customers are able to access their data and acquire solutions to their problems all from one central location is a must. Gone are the days of having to reach out to multiple departments and spend hours trying to resolve customer issues – instead, ServiceNow’s automation capabilities can provide customers with the solutions they need in minutes.

Improve Customer Satisfaction through Agile Development

Information technology is not always the easiest to work with and issues are bound to arise – what truly matters is the speed and agility with which an institution can address these issues in order to maintain a high level of customer satisfaction.

ServiceNow offers Agile development which focuses on creating applications designed to handle problems that arise through a collaborative development environment. This allows for management of multiple tools that have in the past created disconnects between financial professionals and stakeholders.

There are many ways in which ServiceNow can be used to apply Agile methodologies to improve the customer experience, including:

  • Accelerated Delivery Times: Continuous development and speedy deliveries of software and updates are necessary to keep customer satisfaction levels high.
  • Unified Software Development Workflows: Scrum, SAFe, Waterfall, and hybrid developments can now be pulled into the same system and connected to activities within ServiceNow, rather than having to use these tools individually which can cause unwanted disconnection.
  • Optimized Resources: ServiceNow helps financial professionals to better predict work levels, allowing allocation of resources to be optimized to fit fluctuating consumer demands.

Manage Compliance and Regulatory Change

Professionals in the financial and banking industry know the importance of governance, risk, and compliance – also known as GRC. With ServiceNow, banks can achieve greater operational resilience thanks to the platform offering a number of compliance functionalities, including:

  • Embedding governance, risk, and compliance applications into all workflows
  • Monitoring risk
  • Creating real-time reports and alerts
  • Carrying out risk-mitigating activities

When it comes to risk-based decisions, ServiceNow enable financial institutions to utilize a unified data environment that provides greater access to insights. Everything from custom-made applications to chat features can help in keeping an entire institution up to date and on track with compliance and regulation.

Automated Applications for Compliance

Automation through ServiceNow is not only for boosting productivity and operational efficiency, but for ensuring all compliance requirements are being met and that any new updates or regulatory changes are being observed. Use cases for automated GRC applications include:

  • Monitoring for critical vulnerabilities
  • Identifying and addressing misconfigurations before they become risks
  • Ensuring the compliance program being used also supports the business services
  • Monitoring HR policy requirements and identifying on-boarding risks
  • Ensuring all privacy standards are being met

Final Thoughts

Implementing ServiceNow allows for banks and financial institutions to greatly streamline and optimize their workflows for improved efficiency, greater customer satisfaction, and ensured compliance. ServiceNow’s platform focuses on boosting agility to help businesses respond to problems with greater ease and speed.

When carrying out a ServiceNow implementation, it is important to take a full inventory of how the platform can be used to better not only an IT department, but to improve the operational excellence of the entire institution.

To learn more about ServiceNow or to inquire about CPQi’s ServiceNow Managed Services, contact us today.

This article was written by Cesar Cotait, Managing Director of Brazil CPQi.