RBS adopts SAS big data analytics to boost customer service


Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has adopted data analytics software from SAS to improve how it makes decisions and delivers customer service. The move is indicative of more companies adopting digital services to transform the way they do business rather than simply optimize IT operations. RBS has deployed a suite of SAS software to over 10,000 employees, allowing them to mine, analyse and visualize data.

The bank uses the platform to create more personalized experiences based on previous interactions online, over the phone and in the flesh. This deeper analysis of customer data gives employees a better understanding of how to handle queries and complaints. The data analysis is also used to gain insights into errors made by staff. RBS found that most complaints could be attributed to inexperienced customer service agents. The bank now provides personalized coaching to those on the frontline of customer service.

RBS said that analyzing structured and unstructured big data has offered a much clearer picture of what causes complaints and how to resolve them. “For example, a customer that isn’t able to cancel a direct debit within 24 hours may be satisfied with the service that an agent delivered but unhappy with the process,” RBS said. “By having the relevant data available in a single dashboard, RBS is able to identify the issue and respond with improvements to the process, branch or team.”

Christian Nelissen, RBS’ chief data officer, or ‘the data guy’ as he’s known, explained that SAS was chosen because the bank wanted a single organisation to deliver analytics across its entire data estate. The bank has also worked closely with SAS before. “Our clear strategy is to be the number one bank for customer service, trust and advocacy by 2020. A key part of delivering that strategy is based on improving our customer experience by knowing more about our customers, our business, our employees and how we deliver services,” said Nelissen.

“In turn, this data enables us to drive transformational change across the RBS Group that allows us to achieve our ambition of earning customers’ trust by serving their needs better than any other bank.” RBS is keen to use the latest digital technologies to boost performance. The company opted for Facebook at Work last year as a collaboration tool for 100,000 employees across the globe. This approach to digital transformation alters back-office and front-office business processes and evolves the use of IT.

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