October 30, 2012
Survey: Automating Some Sales Functions Saves and Makes Money for Banks
By Steve Anderson
Contributing TMCnet Writer
While sales functions are thought to be one of the last frontiers of automation -- buying from a robot, after all, seems like a bad idea to say the least -- some sales functions actually do well with a degree of automation. That's the word to emerge from the results of a recently completed survey of TechValidate research sponsored by Pegasystems (News - Alert) Inc., that says commercial banking customers can not only see some impressive savings by automating parts of their systems, they can actually make money with increased sales.
The TechValidate survey was conducted through October, and offered some very interesting findings as far as the banking industry went, especially in regard to its connection to technology. First, fully 34 percent of respondents were manually re-inputting data from sales to onboarding tools, and another 51 percent indicating that only some of the information from sales is automatically moved. This in turn adds to labor expenses and has the potential to slow transaction speeds as well as create holes in overall data integrity.
What's more, fully 78 percent of respondents said that, if they had integration capability between sales, onboarding and customer service, they could actually increase their sales to existing clients by at least 20 percent. In perhaps the centerpiece of the entire report, fully 47 percent of respondents said that their sales efforts' most prevalent issue is lack of ability to view client data, in real-time, and from that data create inquiries or further customer requests.
Pegasystems technology, meanwhile -- like the Pega Sales Force Automation suite -- looks to fix a lot of these problems by automating the links between sales and customer service, making sure everyone has access to the most timely information available, and doing so without the need for manual data entry that can not only be costly, but also slow and sometimes incomplete or containing errors. The idea of automating some parts of the sales function makes sense, and at the same time, provides a way for banks to better serve their customers. With some customers actually projecting that they can make more money, not to mention save money, that's both parts of the profit equation acting simultaneously.
While it's not a guarantee that automating the sales process can result in improvements in sales, it's much closer to a guarantee that it can at least reduce costs. Doing both at once is hard to pass up, and especially in this economy, providing better service and doing so at a lower cost is a recipe for success that's about as close to sure to please as possible.
Edited by Rich Steeves