Breaking Digital Gridlock

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Breaking Digital Gridlock #34: The Top 5 Reasons You Are Failing at Digital

Weekly Fintech Tip: Simply Digitizing is Not the goal of Going Digital

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Welcome, my name is John Best. I’m the CEO of Best Innovation Group. You can find me @JBFintech on Twitter. You can also check me out on Instagram @JohnBestOfficial.

You can find my podcast on Spotify. It’s called The BIGcast. If you just go into Spotify, do a search, and you will see The BIGcast. You can listen to us there, you can listen to us anywhere that you have podcasts. I’m also an author, you can find my book on Amazon, on Google Books, Barnes & Noble, wherever they sell books, you can find the book. It’s called Breaking Digital Gridlock.

Today, we’re going to talk about the Top 5 Reasons You’re Failing At Digital. I’ve worked with many, many organizations and I’ve discovered that there are five things that organizations are failing at in regards to digital.

Number One: The first one is culture. It’s not enough to just implement the technology, you have to embrace it. And what this means is, if you’re sitting in the C-suite, if you’ve got a “C” in your title, you’ve got to go down, you’ve got to put your hands on this stuff. You’ve got to make sure you’re using their home banking, you’ve got to make sure you’re using your mobile, you’ve got to make sure that you’re using your voice services. You’ve got to make sure that you’ve seen, understand, touch, and know what’s going on with your data analytics. I know it’s easy to find other people to do that, but it starts at the top. How many of your own staff use your home banking, use your mobile, use your ATM, use your services?

Number Two: The second failure I see a lot is process digitization. So, what I find, is that organizations are hip to digitizing their processes to make them quicker. However, what they’re not doing is process transformation. It’s not enough to just take a process, as it is, and just digitize it, because you’re missing the point if you do that. This is not just a time to take, and digitize, what you’re already doing. It’s a time to take a look and re-engineer that process, to move unnecessary steps out, to find technology to support those steps if you need them, to question every second, every click, every turn, every box they have to fill in, every bit of information.

Number Three: this one is a little controversial, but I really see this happening. What does your workplace environment look like? So, if it looks like this, ancient 1960s picture of a teller line, which by the way, as I was going through and looking at these pictures, I could find that they’re not too far off from a lot of branches and and other credit unions that I’ve visited. This is because we haven’t changed our environment. It’s awfully hard to digitize and transform in an environment that feels like it belongs in the 1990s. I’m not saying that you have to you have to put in robots and drones flying around, but you do have to at least unchain the pens from the front desk in the teller line, because that sends the wrong message. Who’s stealing the pens, anyways?

Your environment is really important, and this goes to your call center, this goes all the way through the organization. It’s not just about the member-facing, or the customer-facing environment. It’s also about your staff-facing environment.

Number Four: Vendors versus partners. This is a big one. As people are moving through their digital transformation, they discover that they need help. They discover that they need software products. They discover that they need services. They discover that they have challenges in certain areas, and they tend to go out and look for vendors. And what I’ve learned is that, a vendor is really, probably not what you’re looking for. A vendor is someone that you go and beat up to get the right price out of, and you don’t really care because their service is a commodity. For example, the people who fix your copiers. I don’t see them as strategic partners because there’s a lot of people who can fix part copiers, and you’re out maybe looking for the best price, and the best service, but at the end of the day, they’re not someone that you’re meeting with to talk about your digital future. Or, to talk about how the product is going to work in the future, and how it’s going to change your business.

When it comes to digital, you’re looking for partners. You’re looking for people but you’re not out there to beat them up on price. You’re looking for someone who’s going to engage with you, listen to what you have to say, understand your business, and work with you on it. So, there’s a big difference between vendors and partners. To find a partner, that means you’ve got to go out and look really hard because all these products, especially in the digital space, are generally 80% the same, and 20% different. And so that 20% difference is usually something that factors into your specific business. For example, let’s say you’re looking for home banking platforms, and you have a strong business portfolio. So, you have a lot of commercial lending. Well, you’re going to find a lot of really good home banking products, but finding one that also supports commercial may be difficult, and you may find one that fits both bills, and that 20% is the fact that they support commercial in a way that you feel like is effective for your business.

Number Five: Data Analytics. Alright. So, I hear this a lot. “John, we started our data analytics, but you know what? Woop-dee-doo. No one’s using it.” And here’s what I think is happening: So, Phase One, in my mind, of an organization moving into the Data Analytics space is: First, we’ve got to corral our data. We’ve got data everywhere. We’ve got data in the core systems. We’ve got data on, you know, third-party systems like credit cards or mortgages. It’s all over the place. Speaker 100:06:23Step One is a data governance group. They get the data. I think a lot of folks are already down that route and I think it’s fantastic. Step Two is: “OK, now we’ve got to do something with this data.” That’s generally done these days by what we call algorithms. So, for example, you may find a company, one of my favorites is working with Brian Ley from Alpharank. So, Alpharank will go through, and look at your data, apply their algorithm, and help you figure out how to grow, and what kind of folks you’re looking for, and what kind of marketing you can do, what’s going to work in order to get them to join and be part of your organization. So, now you’ve got this algorithm, and it’s giving you this information. The next step is fulfillment, and this is where I find a lot of people don’t know what to do. So you’ve got the data, you’ve got the committee, everything’s working well. You’ve got the algorithm, it’s spit out some file that says, “Here’s something you can go do.” Now, you have to execute on it. And I find that the digital services, the digital marketing, the products, are in play for that that last inch, that moment when you actually get the offer to the member, or you actually need to act on that data. You’ve really got to focus on this, which is the data warehouse and corralling the data. Which is never ending by the way. That never stops, because you’re always adding new systems, and all the new systems have data. Then, there’s these algorithms. That’s never ending. Somebody’s always going to have a new algorithm. New stuff that is going to produce business for you, it’s going to reduce margins, it’s going to find new veins of business, new veins of product. And so, that’s never ending. Then, we have to take our digital platform, and shape it in a way that allows us to leverage the offers, and the things we’re getting, to provide fulfillment for what we’re finding, for these services. So, this has been a fintech tip. I hope that you’ve enjoyed it. And I thank you for taking the time to watch this. I appreciate everyone who let me know where they’re watching this, which is the vast majority on LinkedIn. So I appreciate all my LinkedIn folks, and I’m looking forward to comments and ideas. Thanks again.

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