Silos, CEOs and CRM

April 8, 2016 (comments: 0)

Silos are great for storing corn, but not so great for storing data. The term “silos” is commonly used to describe how customer touch points are isolated from each other, meaning that the technologies underlying service delivery channels (branches, call centers, web, IVRs, ATMs, etc.) have evolved within their own space. The silo effect is widely acknowledged throughout the industry, yet the problem remains, and comes at a very high cost—measured not only in hard dollars, but also in customer (dis)satisfaction.

Too often the maintenance of each channel’s infrastructure requires specialized knowledge and skills and institutions have no choice but to run redundant system technology in order to host the respective, disparate databases and multiple application platforms. Inconsistencies between user interfaces and information access leaves both customers and customer Service Reps, uncertain and frustrated. And, as things stand, current initiatives for mobile banking, social networking and more are only going to contribute to the silo effect.

Resolution from a technology perspective is in sight, but there is a fundamental issue at the organization level—silos represent turf ownership and in some cases, job security. If the industry is ever to breakdown the silo effect, change has to come from the executive suite. CEOs that establish and support a strategic initiative to unify the enterprise – by migrating systems to common or at least open technology environments – will position their institutions to drive operational efficiencies, increase revenue and deliver customer experiences that build loyalty and success

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