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Think more like a tech company and less like a bank

May 4, 2015

Coming from the tech world, it was quite a culture shock when I joined Ignite Sales several years ago and began selling into the banking industry.  My background is in the software world where sales are very competitive and sales teams are completely focused on closing the deal. Every lead was vetted and followed up and the entire company would rally around the sales team just to help them make and close that big sale.

I was having a hard time adjusting to the lack of a competitive sales culture and the absence of the tools and processes needed to support that sales culture. It was also apparent that banks didn’t view new non-banking entities such as Wal-Mart and PayPal innovative technology companies like Square as real threats. The competition to traditional banks is very real, and it is heating up.

It is no surprise that banks are struggling in this very competitive economy.

But some banks are beginning to wake up.

In Bank Innovation’s recent article on this very subject, the author explores Capital One’s changing digital culture in more detail. According to the article, Capital One CEO Richard Fairbank understands this and told investors on a recent earnings call, “We’re going to need to think more like technology companies and maybe a little less like banks.”

Technological advances and customers’ experiences in other industries have significantly altered customers’ expectations for banking.  In order to successfully compete banks must service customers using cutting edge technology that allows them to seamlessly engage with customers in whatever technology medium they choose.

In other industries, consumers as well as businesses utilize and incorporate mobile, video, and conferencing into their everyday transactions. Banks are not as advanced. They haven’t invested in platform technologies that give them the agility to interact with their customers in the way they expect.

Many new non-banking competitors are coming from the tech or retail sectors and those companies understand the strategic importance of digital technologies and the culture that develops from using these technologies. They may not have banking experience but they can buy that experience. These innovative companies will hire the banking expertise from fledging banks.

If retail banks want to grow and continue to be dominant players in the banking, the must embrace leading edge digital technology and the business process that result from using that technology today.

Ignite Sales’ award-winning OmniChannel Sales Analytics solution transforms the sales process, unites all sales channels and provides banks the ability to measure the financial value of each of its channels. Customers are able to engage with banks using the channel of their choice and can change their engagement channel seamlessly. The solution transforms the sales process with a laser focus on improvements in the customer engagement and provides the necessary analytics capabilities for sales process improvements that fuel organic sales growth. Ignite Sales provides bank executives the insights and tools they need to manage channel sales effectiveness, close the gap on untapped profitability, and improve efficiency ratios.

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Image courtesy of bluebay at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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