1 min read

Redspire shortlisted for Financial Technology Partner of the Year Award

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Redspire has been shortlisted for the Financial Services Technology Partner of the Year Award at this year’s Scottish Financial Technology Awards, in collaboration with DIGIT.

The shortlisting celebrates Redspire’s commitment to innovation and transformation in the sector. Our partnerships with some of the UK’s biggest financial brands and customer-facing Government financial organisations have led them through radical digital transformation and business improvement projects, revolutionising how they do business and connect with customers.

DIGIT’s Scottish Financial Technology Awards

The Scottish Financial Technology Awards are designed to recognise effort, innovation, and impact. The judging process looking to acknowledge exceptional accomplishments, invention and improvement and reward individuals and organisations that are making a difference to frontline customers and industry progress, as well as those making valuable contributions beyond the sector and into the wider community.

The winner will be announced at the Scottish Financial Technology Awards which take place on September 25th, 2019 at the Sheraton Grand in Edinburgh.

The Redspire management team is proud of our hard-working teams and excited to be selected in such a prestigious category. Thanks to DIGIT and the Scottish Financial Technology Award team for selecting us. We’re looking awards ceremony to celebrate the incredible FinTech industry in Scotland and look forward to seeing you there!

About Redspire

Specialising in Dynamics 365 and the limitless integrations of world-class Microsoft’s Power Platform technologies, Redspire solve organisational business pain, improve operations and create a unified digital eco-system that can be constantly enhanced or improved as digital evolves.

With particularly strong capabilities in Financial Services, FMCG, Government and Third Sector, when we work with you, we become your dedicated Dynamics partner. Our client base includes Money and Pension Service, AIG Group, RPMI, Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banking Group (CYBG) and GroupM.

7 min read

Top five benefits of upgrading and migrating to Cloud CRM in Banking and Financial Services

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The financial services sector is under growing pressure to meet ever-increasing compliance and regulation whilst delivering data-centric, customer-first experiences. Digitally switched on audiences from data-aware millennials to silver-surfing baby boomers are riding the digital wave and their expectations from Banks and Insurance providers are high. In touch with the innovations, apps and tools that help manage their money, check on the financial health and make transacting seamless and hassle-free both at home or on the go, consumers are hungry for the same sort of one-click services they’ve come to expect from digital giants like Apple, Amazon and PayPal.

Cloud-native banking and insurance

It’s clear that tech-tonic shifts are taking place in the sector, fed by this consumer demand and driven by accelerated advances in tech, in the form of AI, the cloud, advancing fintech and robotics. To keep up with these rapid-fire advances and meet regulatory compliance frameworks, upgrading and migrating existing CRM to clever and intuitive cloud based solutions like Microsoft Dynamics has been identified as the biggest game-changer for Financial Services. Slower early adopters of cloud technologies than other industries, the sector is now embracing the clear benefits of migrating services from on-premise to cloud CRM, making data work harder and smarter.

This year, Fujitsu says that in banking the focus should be on completing the move towards being cloud-native, whilst insurance sectors should take advantage of open APIs and the Internet of Things within their operational models. Pascal Huijbers, Chief Technology Officer Financial Services EMEIA at Fujitsu, says:

Banks were among the first organisations to take the digital transformation agenda seriously, realising the danger to their core business, or even their very existence, if they failed to respond to the threat of disruption from new entrants. Insurance companies are also responding with imaginative new initiatives in areas such as IoT. This year, the banks’ agenda is about driving away from expensive legacy technology and towards becoming cloud native, with all the implications that holds for agility, innovation and cost efficiency.

Cloud CRM or on-premise CRM

At it’s most basic level, on premise solutions are hosted locally on your organisations in-house computers and servers. Cloud software is hosted on the vendors’ servers, accessible via web browsers like Bing, Google etc. Accessibility isn’t the only consideration however when upgrading to cloud CRM or comparing and deciding upon upgrading to Cloud CRM over on-premise. Other factors to consider including software ownership, the cost of software and hardware, updates, support and security.

At Redspire, we have a proven track record upgrading and migrating disparate on-premise legacy or out of support systems to innovation ready cloud-deployed solutions. Here’s our top five benefits of upgrading to Cloud CRM and other cloud technologies.

1. Optimised budgets

When you upgrade to a cloud CRM like Microsoft Dynamics 365, it removes the need for costly IT infrastructure. With reduced needs for capital outlay, servers and equipment, organisations benefit from short and longer term return on investment. Redspire recently partnered with Money and Pensions Services (formerly the Money Advice Service) to upgrade and migrate to Dynamics 365 online. Transforming both customer facing and third party stakeholder operations, the deployment significantly reduced hardware costs, software upgrade costs and timescales, and incorporated support and fix costs for both the system and the hardware.

2. World-class, data compliant security

Mass service outage or even personal user downtime in service accessibility has a massive impact on day to day consumer convenience. Yet security breaches aren’t just an inconvenience to your customers in financial services. They can seriously damage consumer trust as well as their financial wellbeing and data security, as evidenced by the recent TSB security breach and subsequent disruption to services that cost the firm 16,000 customers.

The access and world-class security provided by Microsoft’s cloud technologies are some of the tightest, most secure and compliant security structures available today, and fully optimised to meet PSD2 (Payment Services Directive 2) and GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) regulations. Connections between Microsoft data centres and end users are encrypted, and public endpoints secured using industry-standard TLS. Additionally, Microsoft review and authenticate over some 40 trillion logins per day. Threats and cyber hacks are managed by Microsoft’s Cyber Defence Operations Centre, which brings together security response experts from across the company to help protect, detect, and respond to threats in real-time. Microsoft’s annual investment in security, data protection, and risk management exceeds over a billion US dollars. Long story short? Your data is safer in the cloud than it is in your back office.

3. Innovation ready with automated updates and constant access to new features

An outdated, unfit for purpose CRM is one of the biggest obstacles to digital innovation and hampers customer engagement and success. Sound data delivered via adaptable technology is the foundation of efficient, exciting customer experience, making it easier to provide the innovative products and services that your banking and insurance customers crave. Cloud technologies are a clear winner over on-premise systems in this respect as they’re constantly updating to the latest and greatest version for all of your people, from branch level and field agents to senior directors. With Microsoft Dynamics 365, automated updates mean you’re always working on the latest version with continuous access to the latest cross-platform and cross-departmental features like integrated web portals, mobile apps and innovations in AI like Customer Service chatbots etc.

April 2019 was a key milestone for Dynamics 365, with all customers updated to the latest version. This release included three brand new Dynamics AI applications that deliver immersive customer experiences, excellent behavioural insights and add useful business controls in security, risk and compliance.

4. Productive teams and engaged employees

Cloud based CRM is the key to delivering differentiated consumer experiences in banking. Real time cross business data updates and a single customer view drive personalisation at a granular level by connect your braches, field staff, call centres and third party providers with the technology, rich data and insights your people you need to provide incredible experiences. Forrester’s Total Economic Impact™ study on Dynamics 365 for Customer Service 2018 indicated that the solution increases banking call centre staff efficiency by 15%, to a value of £4.56million across three years. Customers remain loyal, have better product and service uptake and have increased lifetime value when their needs are met. Employees are empowered with the tools to deliver best practice, show increased loyalty and have higher workplace satisfaction, whilst IT professionals benefit from agility of the solution, and are able to roll out innovation faster. Cloud CRM ensures that banking teams run like well-oiled machines.

Kate Leggett, VP and Principal Analyst, Forrester Research: “As they move to the cloud, companies can leverage cloud technologies and deliver these differentiated experiences. Cloud CRM deployments give you faster time to value.”

5. Cross business accessibility

With 24 hour a day, seven days a week access to banking and financial services the norm, and the move away from office based 9 to 5 roles, cloud CRM supports both customers and teams by giving them access to service functionality as and when they need it. Dynamics 365 is accessible to colleagues on any device with an internet connection. On-the-go employees are able to capture and share the same real time insights as desk-bound teams and even collaborate with with teammates and customers as they travel via an in-system common interface, giving them the tools and insights that increase employee engagement, drive customer satisfaction and deliver the strategic company vision.

Microsoft Dynamics 365 is next-generation business management and digital transformation system that unifies ERP, CRM and business intelligence into one slick application that can be uniquely tailored to your business needs. Blending people, culture and technology, it feeds all areas of the financial services business from day to day frontline branch operations to boardroom vision and strategy, whist allowing IT teams to innovate new initiatives instead of problem solve day to day. For more information on improving the digital transformation strategy to grow alongside your business, get in touch with Redspire today, or check our one of our free upcoming webinars, including “The benefits of migrating your CRM to the cloud”.

5 min read

Heal your business pain with Dynamics QuickStart CRM

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When it comes to business pain, at Redspire we’ve seen it all. And help our clients UK-wide solve theirs, via our Dynamics QuickStart CRM package or phased CRM implementation.

As one of the UK’s leading CRM consultancies, we are experts in resolving the digital and data pain points that all businesses face.

Our client base share similar internal challenges, but we understand that the internal approach to resolving them may vary from business to business. Time constraints, changeable budgets and operational capacity all impact the ability to undertake a CRM implementation project, even when it’s badly needed.

That doesn’t change the fact that we are living through the 4th Industrial Revolution. Consumer expectations are at their highest, radically transforming the way businesses interact when they sell, promote and provide service. In this digital age, personalisation and customer connectivity are a fundamental business priority. And the only way to achieve them is with a fit for purpose CRM system that will unify data, streamline processes and improve productivity.

Introducing Dynamics QuickStart CRM…

Dynamics QuickStart CRM is a fixed scope, fast implementation of Microsoft Dynamics 365, built to fit your business need, type and budget. Implement a new CRM, upgrade a current CRM or entirely replace your existing system fast, for maximum impact and little business disruption.

Perfect for busy businesses who want quick improvements and results, and suitable for all organisations of all shapes and sizes – from Banking and Financial Services to Manufacturing, Government and the Public Sector – QuickStart CRM from Redspire is a quick and simple CRM solution that delivers immediate results.

If you’ve heard your c-suite leaders and department heads make any of the following statements, your business will benefit from Dynamics QuickStart CRM…

PAIN POINT 1: “There’s no single version of the truth!”

Also known as the right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing.

It’s surprising just how many large multi-national businesses are operating with outdated data silos and no single view of their customer across various departments. Which begs the question, how can you understand your customer, predict sales propensity and provide great service, if you can’t view their interactions with your business holistically?

If your customer, sales and service data sit on multiple databases and spreadsheets, you’re undoubtedly only skimming the surface of your sales capabilities. Whilst delivering poor service to your client base. Yet you can optimise operations fast with Dynamics QuickStart CRM. Your teams and your bottom line will benefit from a single customer view that accelerates sales, personalises service and increases customer engagement.

PAIN POINT 2: “What are the salespeople doing?!”

Also known as the boss is getting twitchy because there’s no visibility of what the moneymakers are up to.

Digitally optimised workplaces and effective data and pipeline management have been proven to make teams much more productive. Yet workforces often resist the serious benefits of a transparent CRM system for fear of big brother watching, measuring their performance and finding it lacking.

With a collaborative, visible pipeline, the improvements to the workforce, customer and management are immeasurable. Put your hands on real time reports with ease, review an up-to-the-minute pipeline status and automate business reports at the click of a button with Dynamics QuickStart CRM

PAIN POINT 3 : “Excellent – sales are up…but where are they coming from?”

Also know as winging the sales process rather than using an evidence-based approach

If you aren’t tracking customer buying patterns, sourcing lead traffic and attributing your sales to marketing touchpoints, how can you understand your sweet spot? If you don’t track the customer journey and how you win or lose, you’re undoubtedly leaving money on the table. Which makes your salespeople’s lives harder and returns poor ROI from your marketing spend. Integrate Dynamics QuickStart CRM with your existing systems to see the bigger picture and find your strengths and weaknesses. And then watch your sales grow.

PAIN POINT 4: “I’m sick of the ‘them and us’ – they’re supposed to be part of the same team!”

Also known as sales and marketing blaming each instead of working towards shared goals

Despite being part of the same organisational family, with shared business goals, Sales and Marketing teams are notorious for being the warring siblings of the business world. How often are you hearing ‘what are marketing doing, there’s no leads coming through, and when they are, they’re awful!’ Or marketing complaining about lack of sourcing and poor conversions from the sales teams?

The issue is typically lack of visibility, reporting and communication. A CRM that works for all departments, tracking campaigns, leads and opportunities will encourage a positive workforce, working together with shared vision, and MI that fosters a collaborative, data-driven approach

PAIN POINT 5: “Where’s the paper trail for this complaint?!”

Also known as lack of customer information management

We’ve all endured the customer frustration of a poorly handled complaint. It’s often just as challenging for agents trying to manage customer services issues if their organisation isn’t managing data properly. Customers need to repeat themselves each time they call or email, and your employee is on the back foot from the outset, not knowing what decisions have been made previously. With QuickStart you can automate and aggregate customer service information, so that your people always have what they need to hand, when they need it.

PAIN POINT 6: “Reporting shouldn’t be this hard. Can’t we automate it?”

The simple answer is yes. And you should be! Free up your key people’s time from hand preparing reports and get them back to their day job. With QuickStart, you’ll access management information, sales, marketing and customer satisfaction reports as and when you need them, even when you’re on the go.

Ready to find out more about QuickStart CRM?

At Redspire, we specialise exclusively in Dynamics 365, helping clients across different industries – from Government to Financial Services – transform digitally. Working with world-class tools from the Microsoft universe, Dynamics integrates seamlessly with existing operations to unify whole businesses into a single, intelligent system. Get quick installation, rapid delivery and faster return on investment with Microsoft Dynamics QuickStart CRM. Read more today or get in touch for a no-obligation chat with our consultants now.

4 min read

Ten CRM Saves for Insurance Firms of all Sizes

One of the biggest challenges for an Insurance business scoping CRM software is getting behind the headlines and working out how it will provide customer knowledge and marketing opportunities.

CRM is indeed the launch pad for digital transformation and yes, it does bring collaboration, communication and efficiency. Likewise, it does make light work of managing campaigns, sales opportunities and customer management. It also does indeed improve customer service, increase trust and can enable growth. And yes, all whilst providing the board and your teams with dashboard reporting that helps you identify yet more opportunity.

But, at a granular level, what does any of that mean? What are the departmental headlines for adding to the likes of OGI and marketing platforms?

Here’s just a small selection of some of the ways it has helped our insurance and broker clients:

  1. Eradicating data duplication – with departments often having their own silos of information, one customer’s data could be held in over three separate locations but without knowing what knowledge is sitting elsewhere. There are negative GDPR, cross-sell, upsell and compliance consequences. On the flip side, a single customer view allows you to use customer knowledge from across the business to grow without further recruitment, to meet GDPR requirements, to syphon out unwanted prospects and to make sure all marketing messages are entirely relevant to those receiving them.
  1. Improving channel relationship management – Insurance relationships can be multi-layered so it’s critical to be able to identify the complex ones and manage them appropriately, whether that’s through more careful messaging or a key customer programme.
  1. Improving customer conversations – When each department is looking at the same single customer view, they have a full picture of that business’ or individual’s relationship with the company. Every conversation is informed and followed up on which means no red faces, fewer errors and better opportunity creation and handling, meaning retention and growth.
  1. Making marketing more effective and helping sales to convert opportunities – Segmentation improves marketing results and a single customer view where knowledge of a customer is added to with every interaction is step one. Microsoft Dynamics 365 goes beyond that with MailChimp integration and an in-depth view of campaigns and activities for better understanding of success ratios as well as white space analysis. When sales know how a lead arrived, it’s much easier to understand their prospect’s requirements and mindset making the pipeline view so much more meaningful.
  1. More efficient and secure operations – No business can grow smoothly whilst information and administration is in disparate systems. Having a central platform for the business not only brings more customer knowledge and better upsell, it helps communication and action to flow much more easily. Documents are stored centrally and everyone has access to the task lists they need to progress their department.
  1. Reinforced compliance – With better business process flows and a clearer approach for GDPR and data, it is easier to meet compliance regulations. Claims benefit too with succinct audit trails as well as a 360-degree view of the client.
  1. Better reporting – Every organisation has a goldmine of insight amongst its systems but it’s not useful unless it can be surfaced meaningfully. What is true of one department as it stands alone, may alter when you consider the facts from another. With CRM (and particularly with Dynamics 365 because that’s where our expertise lies), management reports are vivid, clear and massively insightful.
  1. Talent retention – Good customer service representatives are like gold-dust and need to be kept. Working with a CRM system (if it’s the right one for your business) removes a lot of the daily task frustration that can mount up. It can also help each departmental team to see its role in the wider business ecosystem. User adoption is key but once you have it, your CRM can succeed. With Dynamics 365 Talent App, there are also fantastic ways to manage recruitment, onboarding and career progression.
  1. Better Business Insight – CRM allows you to see the patterns at play in your organisation and to identify areas of future growth. It allows you to see the opportunity that has perhaps hidden itself up until now because you didn’t have the data to show itself. By analysing customer history, profile and behaviours information, you can better understand future requirements and prepare accordingly.
  1. Automation of routine tasks – Back when CRM first started, this was at the crux of it. And it has evolved to a level of sophistication that reflects the digital age we’re now in. As with all digital technology, the basic rule remains. Get the basics working well then you have your pathway to the bigger transformations such as AI, Chatbots and self-service.

 

Are you currently scoping your CRM project or looking for tips on how to kick start your CRM strategy? Watch our 8 step webinar series which will guide you through the entire journey of implementing a new CRM system. From covering the basics of what a CRM system does, all the way to choosing a partner and scoping your business case.

3 min read

What B2B Insurance Brokers need to know about their customers in 2017

2016 was a transformative year for technology in the insurance sector and in 2017, the trends will build pace and move to the next operational level of activity and impact. It needs to so that venture capital and partnership interest doesn’t wane.

The Insurtech boom comes at a time when customers are demanding deeper insight, better service and cheaper costs. When technology can come in and disrupt the traditional insurance business model, business and industry experts are advising that incumbent brokers need to look at what is behind it, and how to meet the challenge head on.

Unsurprisingly, it comes down to technology. New types of products, new segments, new types of providers, new business models, new distribution methods and growing use of emerging tech are all made possible because of it.

So, how does a B2B broker with SME clients continue to defend territory and prevent being cut out of transactions in a disrupted sector?

The principals haven’t changed. The importance of customer centricity is at the heart of everything the sector is seeing. Unless you’re providing the customer with an experience they can’t get anywhere else, why would they engage? It’s the same for us. There are many Microsoft Dynamics partners out there, so we must ensure that the service we provide adds and enhances the product at every step.

 

Have you prioritised digital transformation?

It’s not enough to have an externally digital face. Is your business set up with digital capability at the centre? The systems you have in place to support your employees and to manage processes could propel or push back your customer centric plans for growth.  There is little point having good lead generation rates from your offline and online marketing presence if you then struggle to meet expectations for response, service and product customisation. A good CRM system will not only manage those leads and conversions, it will vastly improve collaboration, productivity and insight, as well as customer engagement and retention.

 

What are you doing with your data?

Data use has stepped up a gear. It’s not just about organisation of it anymore, it’s about using that data to drive strategic decisions and embedding real time analytics for maximum insight. CRM systems are moving on at pace to meet the need. Businesses that were operating in silos are increasingly moving to more scalable and integrated solutions that surfaces meaningful data from internal and external transactions.  It’s this insight that allows you to find the point of difference for each of your customers.

 

What added value are you bringing to customers?

Customer centricity isn’t just about the end product. It’s about the full experience. Why would an SME want to deal with you over another broker? Brokers were traditionally valued for the associated reduction of participation costs but that is one of the areas massively under threat right now.

Risk management expertise still counts. How will you engage your customers more deeply so that they continue to see and benefit from the consultation that you provide? Making sure that every employee who needs to, knows each customer by their sector and areas of interest will enable them to go the extra mile in supportive behaviour, cross sell and meaningful interaction. Your customers should feel ‘known’ and that they can access what they need from you easily and through any channel.

 

What tools are you using?

 If your business hasn’t yet considered CRM, or if it’s not doing the job for you, now is the time. The technology has changed massively and the current Microsoft Dynamics 365 has changed the game offering increased scalability, modularity and role-based licensing and applications.   In a few years, all businesses will be working this way and now is the time to get on board so that you are running with it when the competition peaks.

1 min read

14 Ways Microsoft Dynamics CRM Can Prevent Insurance Comparison Site Visits

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In this infographic, we show you 14 Ways that Microsoft Dynamics CRM can prevent insurance comparison site visits

Please click on image for high-res PDF version

14-Ways-MS-Dynamics-Helps-Insurers

Want more? Join our free webinar on 24th November and let’s take 20 to delve a bit deeper.

Register for our webinar HERE

3 min read

Why Insurers Choose Microsoft Dynamics CRM for Customer Retention

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The benefits of CRM are well known in the insurance industry. Seamless customer service, faster enquiry handling, smarter processes, effortless task management and automated workflows all mean much higher productivity and customer retention.

But as Microsoft take Dynamics CRM onto the next level with their forthcoming Dynamics 365, let’s remember the reasons why Microsoft Dynamics CRM has always been one of the best selling in the sector.

Here are just a few of the compelling facts that build on the basics of what a good CRM system should do.

  • Deployment Options: Dynamics CRM is the only CRM system built solidly enough to allow you to choose and change deployment. You can read more about the benefits of On-Premise v Cloud-Hosted on our
  • Integration: Being part of the Microsoft family comes with big benefits. Seamless integration with Outlook, Skype, Office 365 to name a few with LinkedIn soon to follow. It’s a connectivity that other providers simply don’t have.
  • Familiar User Interface: One of the highest user adoption rates in the market. Coupled with partner expertise (such as ours of course!), Dynamics CRM is set up for success from day one.
  • Intuitive customisation: Dynamics CRM comes into its own when the right tools and apps are deployed to make it really fit your business objectives. It’s a solid platform to customize from a access to a wide range of tools and its scalability means it will always fit your business’ processes and people.
  • Easier Administration: There is an extensive administrative function allowing you to alter fields, entities and processes without code if you have the right team internally.
  • Scalable and Innovative: The pace of change in the business environment is incredible. Dynamics CRM has always been at the forefront of the role of CRM and is always looking to the future to maximise the return on investment for its customers. You can read more about how this will look with the forthcoming Microsoft 365 on our blog.
  • Data Security: With the rise of security hacks and identity fraud across the world, cloud-hosted data security has never been more crucial. Each Microsoft data centre has perimeter security, multi-factor authentication, locked racks and extensive video monitoring. More importantly, Microsoft is the only Cloud provider to have UK data centres, making it even easier for businesses with highly sensitive data to benefit from the advantages of Cloud-hosting.
  • Extended CRM: The Microsoft Dynamics platform has evolved from a CRM tool to a fully integrate collaboration, communication and business productivity suite. With the right customisation and input, Dynamics can improve your relationships with suppliers, contractors and partners, as well as your customers.
  • Pricing: Users, press, industry analysts and partners alike, all rate MS Dynamics as one of the best value platforms across licensing, services, training, customisation, implementation, administration and maintenance.

Any CRM system is a commitment that it’s important to get right. To give you further insight into how it helps with customer centricity, we’ve prepared a Step-by-Step Guide that is free to download and will get you on the right path.

 

The Step by Step Guide to Getting CRM Right - Step 1

4 min read

Is there really a role for CRM in Customer Centric Insurance?

Customer centricity is a top talking point in the insurance industry.

The Internet of Things (IoT) is changing the way customers interact with insurance products across every channel. UK Insurance comparison sites are booming, data is getting bigger and technology is getting more sophisticated (wearables, black boxes, drones to name a few). With so much development and choice, competition is fierce.

So how do insurance firms deliver a better product and superior customer experience?

Insurance start-ups are ahead of the game with an agile ability to embrace the pace of technology and customer expectations for personalized products, numerous interaction options and seamless service. With artificial intelligence, automated processes and predictive digital data just three of the cornerstones of this new era, strategic partnerships are beginning to pop up that allow the incumbents of the industry to keep up despite their risk centric background and all of the infrastructure that supports it.

Whether or not you are already pursuing customer-centric products and services, do you have the right CRM system to hold all the data?

A good CRM system lets you access all relevant information about a customer at the touch of a button, accessed by every department for a 360-degree view. It means an end to the complexity of silos of data and systems that don’t talk to each other and that slow your response rate, personalization ability and productivity down.

Here’s what your CRM system should be doing for you:

  • Faster enquiry handling
  • Intelligent document management
  • Better data management
  • Effortless task management
  • Automated workflows
  • More effective marketing
  • Visibility of your sales pipeline
  • Easy reporting
  • Streamlined claims resolution
  • Proactive customer service
  • Staff productivity
  • Mobile access
  • Multi channel customer interaction
  • Track your most profitable business
  • Track your most profitable channels
10 Insurance Sector Business Outcomes of Microsoft Dynamics CRM

So, why choose MS Dynamics CRM? Here are just a few of the compelling facts that build on the basics of what a good CRM system should do.

  • Deployment Options: Dynamics CRM is the only CRM system built solidly enough to allow you to choose and change deployment. You can read more about the benefits of On-Premise v Cloud-Hosted on our blog.
  • Integration: Being part of the Microsoft family comes with big benefits. Seamless integration with Outlook, Skype, Office 365 to name a few with LinkedIn soon to follow. It’s a connectivity that other providers simply don’t have.
  • Familiar User Interface: One of the highest user adoption rates in the market. Coupled with partner expertise (such as ours of course!), Dynamics CRM is set up for success from day one.
  • Intuitive customisation: Dynamics CRM comes into its own when the right tools and apps are deployed to make it really fit your business objectives. It’s a solid platform to customize from a access to a wide range of tools and its scalability means it will always fit your business’ processes and people.
  • Easier Administration: There is an extensive administrative function allowing you to alter fields, entities and processes without code if you have the right team internally.
  • Scalable and Innovative: The pace of change in the business environment is incredible. Dynamics CRM has always been at the forefront of the role of CRM and is always looking to the future to maximise the return on investment for its customers. You can read more about how this will look with the forthcoming Microsoft 365 on our blog. Link to dynamics 365 blog
  • Data Security: With the rise of security hacks and identity fraud across the world, cloud-hosted data security has never been more crucial. Each Microsoft data centre has perimeter security, multi-factor authentication, locked racks and extensive video monitoring. More importantly, Microsoft is the only Cloud provider to have UK data centres, making it even easier for businesses with highly sensitive data to benefit from the advantages of Cloud-hosting.
  • Extended CRM: The Microsoft Dynamics platform has evolved from a CRM tool to a fully integrate collaboration, communication and business productivity suite. With the right customisation and input, Dynamics can improve your relationships with suppliers, contractors and partners, as well as your customers.
  • Pricing: Users, press, industry analysts and partners alike, all rate MS Dynamics as one of the best value platforms across licensing, services, training, customisation, implementation, administration and maintenance.
  • With the upcoming launch of Microsoft Dynamics 365, the scope of CRM is going to shift up another gear. The pace of change in the insurance industry is fast. This disruptive new approach to CRM is going to make it possible for insurers to keep up. You can read what we know so far about Dynamics 365 on our blog.

Any CRM system is a commitment that it’s important to get right. To give you further insight into how it helps with customer centricity, we’ve prepared a Step-by-Step Guide that is free to download and will get you on the right path.

The Ultimate Guide to: Creating Customer Centricity with CRM

2 min read

Insurers ‘should focus on customer experience’

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A new report has highlighted how UK insurers should perhaps be paying a little more attention to how they approach customer experience, after it was revealed only 16 per cent of customers feel it had improved over the last 12 months.

The KPMG Customer Experience Barometer suggested personal interaction, embracing digital channels and considering a new way of thinking in terms of retail could be three ways to go about bolstering clients’ experience.

Such recommendations were made after it was revealed that e-retailers performed better in the index, with well over half (53 per cent) of clients having extremely positive things to say about their experience of this. Not to mention that better customer experience actually contributes to lower cost-per-acquisition.

UK head of insurance at KPMG Phil Smart explained how addressing customer experience was indeed a challenge for insurers, not least as the market is continually evolving. Furthermore, with so many different rivals competing for the same market space, it can be hard for one insurer to stand out from the crowd over another.

Nevertheless, he went on to say: “Commoditisation hasn’t held online retailers back and insurers have much to learn from this sector.” Global head of insurance at the organisation Gary Reader reiterated Mr Smart’s about the value of being flexible, adding that insurers would need to be able “to deliver a high-quality and differentiating customer experience”.

A reconsideration of the approach taken by insurers in the UK is arguably needed after the report showed the UK’s figure to be notably lower than those of other countries. For example, in China almost two-fifths (39 per cent) of insurance clients felt there had been an improvement in their experience of working with insurers.

What’s more, Association of British Insurers’ figures show the UK’s insurance market to be the largest in Europe and third largest in the world.

The full KPMG report was based on a survey of 5,000 customers from 160 general insurers, leading banks, life insurers, utilities and e-retailers in the UK, the US, Australia, China and Germany.

3 min read

Customer engagement and financial services

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The financial services sector has not, it would be fair to say, done much to polish its reputation for customer engagement over the last few years. Given the storm of negative media headlines it has attracted for bad behaviour such as the mis-selling of complex insurance products, this is understandable.

However, if the sector is to recover from this malaise, financial services – especially those with retail and business lending functions – are going to need to develop their customer engagement strategies.

A host of potential approaches have been suggested, with the water somewhat muddied by the fact that high street banking is beginning to fall away to be replaced with online, phone and mobile services.

CRM will be vital in this new development, as marketers and customer service teams work hard to stay in touch with consumers despite there being less physical touchpoints with which to do so.

But how is engagement likely to develop over the coming years? A new report from KPMG has cast some light on the changes expected to take place.

Customer experience – a great opportunity

Jeremy Anderson, KPMG’s global chairman for financial services, said that one of the greatest opportunities for sustainable revenue growth in what is still a complex market lies in improving the customer experience.

“Those that get it right will not only capture a greater share of new customers, they will
also be better placed to keep their customers and extend their existing relationships,” he explained.

He admitted that many service-based organisations are going to need to work hard to “scrub off the reputational stain” they have developed through recent mismanagement and bad decisions, but argued this only makes the opportunity bigger for those firms that can improve along this metric.

CRM and digitilisation will play a role in this development, argued Mr Anderson.

“Those heading down the road of automation and online services must continue to pay close attention to ensuring that their digitally-focused services are not just market leading, but that every customer interaction that underpins those services and relationships are the best they can be and support the brand values,” declared the KPMG chairman.

Ultimately, CRM solutions can’t be one-size-fits-all or badly implemented if firms are to see a strong return on investment or an uptick in engagement levels.

Working closely with a firm to ensure your customer relationship management software is tailored to your needs will help deal with any issues that arise.

Technology can also play a role in helping employees fulfil their potential and in ‘choreographing’ interactions efficiently, KPMG’s report found. However, training staff to utilise such systems effectively is also key.

“While data, analytics and new technologies will be key, it will be those that are able to integrate their culture, business operations, data and technology that will be best positioned to create a truly customer-centric organisation,” concluded Mr Anderson.

Four insights

KPMG revealed four main insights that service industries, particularly those in the financial sector, should bear in mind if they want to succeed in attracting new customers and retaining their existing ones.

Placing clients at the heart of how they operate is a good start, while understanding that a customer-centred approach will lead to an improved ‘lifetime value’ is also crucial, the consultancy giant posited.

The report also claimed that digital technology can play a big role in transforming the consumer experience, which makes sense as CRM technology becomes more sophisticated.

Finally, it reminded businesses that any engagement strategy will live and die on the quality of the people asked to carry it out, which is a good rule of thumb with any campaign planned by business executives.

A global issue

Customer experience and engagement is a global issue – Chinese consumers, for instance, recorded a rapid growth in their happiness with brand interaction as their market becomes more westernised.

Worryingly, British respondents recorded some of the most negative sentiments around engagement, especially for the banking and insurance sectors.

Customer engagement white paper