In my experience as a service provider to the financial industry, I interact with two very different types of people. In one corner are the innovators, who have great ideas, dream very big and want to move fast and fail fast. In the other corner are the operators, who must keep the proverbial lights on at all costs, while accommodating new and innovative (not to mention complex) requests from their counterparts. This culture clash behind the scenes can introduce unexpected, costly and time-consuming challenges as financial institutions attempt to speed new initiatives to market.
TCO vs. TCE
You are likely used to thinking about the total cost of ownership (TCO) of a piece of hardware or software. But today’s strategic initiatives have evolved dramatically. First, traditional project scopes have shifted: instead of multi-year, multi-million dollar projects, banks are thinking about very specific, manageable, agile implementations that can be completed in a matter of months. Second, the most vital initiatives FIs need to thrive in the digitalized era are no longer channel-based. New functionality and opportunities in individual channels are critical, of course, but the broader directive is nearly always aimed at enhancing the overall consumer experience—and that’s an omnichannel play that requires a harder look at the total cost of experience (TCE).
Time and again, we talk with FIs that fully understand the upfront, hard costs of a new project, but vastly underestimate both the integration and ongoing operations costs. They don’t have the experience with these new types of project implementations to “know what they don’t know”—they may not even recognize where costs could crop up during consumer-experience enhancement exercises, so they can’t accurately tally the real TCE on a given initiative. When we engage with them, we closely examine their organization to understand where we can remove complexity and shift costs to help them meet aggressive goals, timelines and budgetary constraints.
We take a necessary holistic approach to these engagements, working well outside the traditional silos within an organization to get to the root causes of operational challenges. There is no “silver bullet”; instead, our experts, who are seasoned in business-transformation projects and have access to Diebold Nixdorf’s global knowledge bank, work methodically to drive efficiencies and fix problem areas. Internally, an FI’s project implementation team may suffer from departmental worries: is it a helpdesk issue? Do we need to train our employees better? Are there engineering or software issues? We’re able to examine the entire, end-to-end process and provide assistance and direction where needed, in truly holistic fashion.
Innovation vs. Operation
Think about a recent initiative within your own organization. How did you address the culture clash of internal innovators versus operations staff? Where did unexpected issues crop up along the way? How quickly and efficiently were you able to solve them?
Collaborating with an experienced partner is one of the best ways to stanch those challenges before they become a real drain on resources—or worse, threaten to derail a project. The right partner should have the ability to work for you, not just with you. What I mean by that is your services partner should have the appetite to look past the P&L on a spreadsheet, and evaluate ways to drive meaningful change for your organization. Perhaps your service provider gets 1,000 calls a month, and always shows up within four hours of the call—great work, right? Instead of patting themselves on the back, is your service provider looking at ways to reduce the number of service calls to 400 per month, so your employees and your self-service network are up and available more frequently?
Our outcome-driven approach to service excellence, Diebold Nixdorf AllConnect Services℠, ensures the highest levels of care and attention for your unique organization. We help make behind-the-scene culture clashes a thing of the past, by driving efficiencies, delivering worry-free service, and freeing your employees—both the innovators and the operators—to focus on creating and enabling the connected touchpoints and seamless consumer experience that will truly differentiate your organization.
How could our E2E services transform your organization? Let’s take a look at your roadmap and identify some opportunities.
This article originally appeared in RBR’s Banking Automation Bulletin.