In my blog post last month, I wrote about the journey financial services leaders must take to embrace digital technology, integrate our business systems and transform our approach to customer relationships to remain competitive. However, with siloed databases, outdated communication styles and regulatory demands, it becomes a tall order.
Last week I received a text from my doctor’s office, reminding me to stop in for my annual flu shot. It struck me that our journey into digital transformation is not a new one; others have taken similar paths, including the healthcare industry, which lies under its own thick blanket of regulatory scrutiny.
Like the financial services industry, the healthcare industry has spent decades collecting massive amounts of data on their patients – personal histories, clinical charts, insurance information, prescriptions and procedures. In most organizations, the information was siloed in separate databases, unable to be cross-referenced with pharmacy, scheduling, accounting, research and other management systems. The lack of integration, data integrity and transparency across systems resulted in unnecessary tests, insurance fraud, prescription abuse and more.
Today, much of the financial services industry struggles with the same siloed structure. Our CRM systems’ inability to communicate and automate the capture of data from other critical enterprise systems results in duplicated efforts, time wasted in manual data entry, missed sales opportunities, and the development of products and offers that fall short of clients’ expectations of a highly personalized product and experience.
The healthcare industry, a decade ago, developed Electronic Health Records (EHR), which now make it possible to share patient data across networks, leading to better patient care and financial savings. In “The big-data revolution in US health care: Accelerating value and innovation,” McKinsey & Company reported that one California healthcare network has seen an estimated $1 billion in savings from reduced office visits and lab tests, and improved outcomes in cardiovascular disease.
Becoming a data-driven industry has also been an imperative for financial services. If we simply take the world of the advisor and the imperative to automate tasks and create more efficiencies, there have been massive changes. Advisors and agents no longer need to waste time chasing dead ends with messages that don’t hit the mark. Digital algorithms can help us find trends, patterns and opportunities we don’t yet know exist. Predictive analytics can deliver “best next steps” to our advisors and agents based on what has proven successful with clients of the same habits, lifestyles and demographics. No more tedious searching of databases and recording of activities. Highly skilled field staff can spend their valuable time nurturing the right relationships – and more of them.
Embracing a smart digital strategy can lead to improved and often transformative business outcomes. It already is for Hearsay customer Thrivent Financial. Thrivent recognizes that the time its representatives spend with clients correlates to increased engagement and customer loyalty. By implementing Hearsay Social, Hearsay Sites and Hearsay’s built-in compliance, Thrivent’s representatives are reaching more prospects and spending more of their time in personal interaction. With Hearsay Relate, they are communicating in the way clients wish to be contacted – by text – and receiving positive and often immediate response. As a result, Thrivent is generating thousands of social media leads each month, has increased customer acquisition by 22 percent, and is spending 75 percent less time on marketing & compliance busywork. Read more of their story here.
Every day, both business and society make advances toward a digital landscape. The future of businesses, regardless of industry, lies in a willingness to embrace digital technology and turn the data into actionable insights.