How often do you find yourself or your team members tied up in essential but repetitious tasks? Are responsibilities such as collecting and processing data, generating periodic reports, coordinating with multiple business functions, managing workflows, etc., weighing you down? Do you feel exasperated? Do you think a more efficient process can enhance the experience, for both your employees and end-clients alike?
You are not alone. Staying on-top of routine tasks is becoming a problem for everyone, be it an individual leader or an organization. As competitive pressures, regulatory scrutiny, market uncertainties, and evolving client needs test how investment management firms run their business, not having the time to focus on these issues has the potential to jeopardize a firm’s sustainability and growth. In such a scenario, organizations need to re-think how well they are servicing their clients, and what they need to continue attracting them.
Totally discarding and re-thinking a routine can act as an opportunity for firms to make themselves agile and responsive. The best way to do so is by leveraging ‘service design’ as a differentiating element to bring scale and efficiencies to asset and wealth managers.
A well implemented service design engagement can lead to several potential benefits, including
But how is service design defined? Simply put, service design is a collaborative reimagining of business processes and operational models in this digital and analytics era, with an intent to create optimal service experiences. Any successful service design initiative considers the following elements:
Perhaps the concept would be better explained through one of our recent engagements. A leading wealth management firm, which regularly provides its approximately 15K financial advisors with market data and other content to fuel client interactions, contacted us. It sought help to overhaul its daily publication portfolio by optimizing its production process, designing content that resonated with advisors and investors and developing a sound content and distribution strategy.
We began the project by creating a service blueprint. Thereafter, our team of process consultants co-designed a new operating model using automation, collaboration tools, and offshoring framework; the aim was to remove all existing bottlenecks. We also developed a custom authoring tool for the client’s analyst team. We overhauled the underlying content to make it more meaningful and relevant for the readers. Last but not the least, we presented the client with a roadmap to enhance medium-term distribution strategy by leveraging alternative mediums (podcasts, social media, etc.) and a long-term transition to digitize content.
Here is the implementation framework of the custom authoring tool.
The optimized and redesigned publication portfolio helped the client save >1,000 man hours/year; plan change management to minimize disruption & maximize adoption; and continue digitalization to enhance the effectiveness of ongoing and new initiatives.
A surefire approach to effective service design is starting small with a focus on tactical initiatives that deliver immediate impact. The aim should be to quickly scale up to associated business functions that have a direct or indirect impact on client interactions.
A bottom-up approach multiplies success potential by enabling focus on ground-level issues, and delivering tangible benefits to both the provider and users of a service. This approach hinges on three key principles:
Firms looking to embrace service design, must focus on the following key aspects:
By dedicating time to re-engineer processes through a bottom-up service design approach you can register meaningful long-term delivery benefits. You can also create a modernized and fulfilling workplace that encourages employees to work towards creating centers of excellence and innovation; retain knowledge; and reduce turnover.
The infographic below sums up the key elements of a bottom-up service design approach, its implementation, and potential benefits.
Download as .pdf Benefits_of_bottom_up_service_design