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Kiwibank saves millions in productivity hours with ServiceNow CSM

Derek du Preez Profile picture for user ddpreez May 17, 2021
Kiwibank is taking advantage of ServiceNow’s platform of platforms approach and is digitizing workflows across customer service management.

Image of the Kiwibank app
(Image sourced via Kiwibank website)

New Zealand's Kiwibank was created in 2002 with one clear mission: to win the hearts of Kiwis by providing better service, better products, lower fees and better interest rates. Since its creation it has grown to have more than 1 million customers and has hundreds of branches. 

As a challenger bank, it's the philosophy of providing better service that is really central to Kiwibank's success. And workflow vendor ServiceNow is proving to be a key component of this. 

Kaye Maclean, ServiceNow Platform and Product Owner at Kiwibank, was speaking at ServiceNow's annual user conference, Knowledge 2021, which can be accessed here. For all of diginomica's coverage from the event, see our dedicated hub here

Kiwibank began using ServiceNow for ITSM and ITOM three years ago, where Maclean says it quickly saw real improvements with employee engagement, collaboration, as well as improved traceability and reporting. This prompted the bank to consider how the use of ServiceNow could be extended across the organization. Maclean explains: 

In 2019 we went through a business case process and worked with ServiceNow and decided that the best path for us was to look at an enterprise licence that basically entitled Kiwibank to all of the capability of the platform and all those applications. 

Part of the business case though was also looking at supporting the wider ecosystem, and to ensure success, that included establishing really robust operating, governance and adoption models, to ensure that it wasn't just about implementation, but it was actually about the sustainability of that success.

Starting with CSM

Kiwibank knew that it wanted to run multiple streams of work in parallel, but it chose to start with an iterative rollout cycle using agile and starting with an MVP. This approach was adopted so that Maclean and her team could work on achieving buy-in from across the organization. She said: 

It's not just a case of scaling up what you did when you roll out ITSM, there are some real challenges when you're doing it across an entire platform, because you've got such diverse stakeholders.

We really wanted to get that momentum and get that buy in from the business and we chose CSM, as one of our primary deliverables, because it really showed us where we could get the most measurable benefit as quickly as possible. And this in turn created, as we had hoped, real enthusiasm from enthusiastic champions within the business. The business really embraced it and further drove the desire for the rest of the organisation to adopt the platform,

Maclean says that the main reason that the ServiceNow platform has worked so well for Kiwibank is that it has provided a ‘single pane of glass' for the business, where it works as the "glue that holds a lot of the platforms and all the other systems together". 

ServiceNow has long said that it aims to provide a ‘platform of platforms' approach and it is its integration capabilities that are a big draw for Kiwibank. Maclean says:

We really need end to end workflow, and that has to span multiple systems. It's not practical and nor should you expect one application or one system to be able to provide everything.

Process transformation 

Beginning with CSM, Maclean and her team worked with the business to identify over 700 processes that needed to be digitized, which were currently relying on SharePoint, Excel and email - which creates inefficiencies and means lots of system switching for employees. Maclean says: 

We looked at those 700 processes and they kind of fell into two camps, those which we could quickly address in terms of digital forms and digital services, pulling things out of those shared mailboxes and digitising that work. Creating call cases for collaboration and queues that people could actually work out of, instead of trying to do that in an email environment. 

The benefits so far have already been huge for Kiwibank, Maclean says: 

And so that was one major piece of work, which proved to have some really significant benefits. And you know we are looking at the redistribution of almost 2 million productivity minutes in the last 12 months, just by digitising and moving away from those for more manual processes and ways of working. 

In addition to this, Kiwibank is also looking at some of the bigger processes across CSM, such as loan maintenance, which has approximately 42 processes that are being turned into one digital service. This one process alone is delivering huge savings for Kiwibank, as Maclean explains: 

It was a complex workflow with multiple integrations into our other systems. On that one process alone, we saw a million dollars productivity minutes saved annually. So it's not just once, it's annually. Customer satisfaction, employee satisfaction have gone significantly higher because they're not trying to work out of multiple systems, it's more streamlined, it's more dynamic for them. 

COVID-19 helps gain traction

As we all know, COVID-19 has put a huge strain on a lot of businesses, particularly as it relates to customer service. Not only has there been more demand from the general public for quick and effective online services, but organizations themselves have had to pivot to remote work and new operating models.

And unsurprisingly, banks have been placed under huge stress during this period of economic uncertainty. However, Kiwibank found that it was able to respond rapidly with the Now platform and this in turn has led to it gaining further stakeholder support. Maclean says: 

In the middle of all of this we hit COVID-19. It was a defining point for us and how we use CSM, because within four days we were able to create the Customer Care Service that was required, we were able to train and pivot our frontline branch workers that were working from home into the online space, and start supporting that huge demand that came as a result of people not being able to go into the branch as a result of the concerns around COVID-19.

And that did two things for us - one it cemented the success and the value that the platform brings. It demonstrated very quickly how fast we can pivot, and how fast that value can be realised. 

And it really cemented from top to bottom, from our senior execs, right down to the people on the front line, that this was a platform that provides real value. And so that for us as a team was a really defining moment for us. And, we're really proud of the fact that we could actually help our business, when they really needed it.

Kiwibank has so far worked through about 100 of its processes that were identified as part of the initial 700 and is continuing to fold them into the Now platform. As the work progresses, Maclean says: 

It's also taking those digital forms and services that have been created and taking them on to the next level which is around leveraging those integrations that are being established and putting in more complex workflows so that it's not just queue management, it's actually workflow management. And then we can really take advantage of some of that predictive intelligence. 

For more diginomica stories from Knowledge 2021 visit our Knowledge 2021 event hub. Knowledge 2021 opened on May 11th and sessions are available to view on-demand until October 2021. This is the event registration link.

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