How ANZ is building an insights edge

ANZ is extending its customer insights management and reporting in order to develop new banking products and services propositions

Wanting to address the problem of customer feedback in silos, ANZ has extended its Qualtrics integration to better utilise valuable customer feedback and feed it directly into developing new propositions around banking products or services.

“Oftentimes, customer feedback is in a silo and you can learn a lot about people’s feedback with particular episodes or interactions,” ANZ research and insight lead, Simon Edwards, explained to CMO. “Yet other people in the organisation are developing propositions or digital experiences with one-off or bespoke research to understand consumer desirability of particular products. They’re not utilising the broad, ongoing experiential customer feedback.

“By changing some of our structures, we’re taking a lot of what we’re hearing from our customers, and putting it into a proposition development framework. And that means using those insights actively in our proposition development.”  

Extending the existing framework

Collecting customer feedback at scale is a challenge for a 180-year-old bank that services around 9 million customers and has a worldwide workforce of about 50,000 people. ANZ naturally has a number of different customer research, feedback and surveys around a wide range of products and services. It also runs at about 400,000 pieces of feedback a year from customers.

In recent years, the banking group has partnered with Qualtrics to scale up reporting across more than 500,000 customer responses and to capture more than 40,000 employee responses. Having achieved scale with its customer experience program, the ambition has since been to assemble feedback as part of understanding the “pains and gains” of overall customer propositions generally.

For example, in many organisations, Net Promoter Score (NPS) and customer programs often end up siloed, with those parts of the organisation receiving customer feedback from NPS programs not the same people necessarily designing new product propositions and experiences for customers. These are increasingly also more likely to be digitally enabled.

This latest phase of work is about how ANZ approaches NPS as a program in itself. As Edwards said, “it’s about deepening, connecting and relating this feedback to the broader concept of proposition development for the bank”.

“Watching NPS going up, watching it going down happens a lot in organisations,” he said. “But that information is still sitting in its own repository that may or may not be fed into the process of understanding what customers are using and what they want when it comes to new initiatives.

“The biggest thing is that NPS provides clarity and simplicity because oftentimes the themes are very clear,” Edwards continued. “The way NPS works is when you ask someone who is a promoter ‘why’ versus someone who’s a detractor, you often get a really clear idea what the issue is. You’re getting direct feedback from customers, so you’ve got a very clear read on what exceeded their expectations and what fell short.

“This can provide an amazing sense of clarity on what you need to get right when you’re in the middle of a complex project developing new propositions.”

Edwards said it’s this direct, experiential feedback on how ANZ is performing that is so valuable for new product and service development, but often isn’t used in this way in many organisations. By contrast, with new propositions, specific, one-off research is often used.

“Oftentimes, with this market research or proposition development research, you just get a lot of people who are thinking just theoretically about what they might like,” he explained.

“Research has become more complex as the world’s become more specialised in the last 10 years. Often the people dealing with the NPS feedback aren’t necessarily the design community or the UX community, and so oftentimes you’re introducing people to NPS or customer feedback.”

Broadening research internally

ANZ is using Qualtrics customer feedback alongside data and feedback collected from other research activities such as prototyping, discovery and user testing. “This helps provide a more holistic understanding of value for our customers,” Edwards said.

In terms of introducing people typically outside the sphere to NPS data and customer insights, Edwards said it’s all about articulating value. “Once people understand the value they can get by looking at these other sources, it’s pretty easy. It’s just sometimes people don’t know what they don’t know,” he said.

“So getting people aware of what’s in that feedback has been a really important piece of the puzzle.”

What’s also changed is the way Edwards’ team is distributing and packaging these insights internally. “There are different people working on new customer experiences versus working on the existing ones or maintaining the existing ones. Reframing the data as part of the value proposition is what Qualtrics has enabled,” he said.

While initial ROI numbers will get a new deployment across the line, once it’s embedded in the organisation Edwards said success can be measured in culture change. He gauges the return on any new development not just in strict ROI terms, but also in the “qualitative way of seeing how the language within the organisation has changed to reflect the new ways of understanding and analysing customer feedback”.

“I also look at how people internally are engaging with the platform and programs and how they’re using these to solve business problems to understand success.”

Qualtrics Asia-Pacific and Japan head of CX solutions and strategy, Vicky Katsabaris, told CMO one of the biggest organisational obstacles to delivering positive customer experiences is that brands have simply been focused on measuring customer feedback.

However, she argued more often than not, success is about taking action and using customer feedback to plot the path forward and ensure high-value customer have the services, products and experiences they want.

Thanks to its ongoing investment into combining and mining insights, Katsabaris said ANZ is able to develop new propositions it is regularly bringing to market, helping to support its ongoing transformation.

“Moving beyond measurement to take action on feedback is business critical to organisations wanting to get ahead in rapidly changing markets,” Katsabaris said.

Employee culture is also critical to the bank itself, as well as regulators, and that’s something ANZ intends to use the platform for moving forward. Among the next priorities for Edwards are further extending the feedback available to the bank’s employees.

“A lot of companies do pulse surveys and employee engagement. We manage all that, but I’m keen to really drive the employee experience side of it, because it’s potentially a very unique element of our value proposition,” Edwards said.

“Customer feedback is one side and employee feedback is another. It comes down to seeing stakeholder engagement as a really critical element in understanding the value the platform is providing.” 

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