Wednesday, 26 September 2012

CRM must go with BI

I assume you own a car. May be two.
I am sure you have a bank account with reasonable amount of transactions.
I am sure you have taken a home loan to fund your dream house / apartment
I am sure you have parked some funds in mutual funds etc

Has your dealer ever called you to find if you would like to upgrade your car, or whether you are looking for second car, or simply test drive a new model just introduced? Most likely no. Has your bank ever called you to find out if you need a home loan or for that matter, any personal loan? Most likely no. Has your insurance co ever called you to find out if they can cover your other assets? Most likely no.

I checked and all these companies have CRM. Do they use it? Yes. Do they really use it? No.

Take my case. I drive a Honda Civic and when I bought it, it was pre-owned. First time when I took it to a Honda dealer for service, my name was entered as the current owner into their national database. They could have asked simple questions like I have any other car, how many members are in my family, are we double income or no. None of these questions would have been personal in nature. This is enough for Honda to apply certain demographic profile against me.  And its not difficult to find answers to questions like…

  • How long has been my ownership?
  • Am I happy with vehicle performance and service?
  • Does my demographic information indicate I could be looking for a second car?
  • Given the vehicle segment and my profile, Am I a candidate for upgrade?

Or take my bank account. I am on Platinum status. This means I met certain internal criteria. And they have even assigned a relationship manager I can call. With all financial and non-financial information available in front of them, my bank already has a profile about me. Similarly…

  • How does my family profile stack up against their offering?
  • What is the family income and what does that mean?
  • Do I have a credit card with the bank? How is my payment pattern? Is there an add-on card?
  • What is my average balance?
  • Can the average balance fit into any investment scheme?
  • Do I have a home loan? Do I need a home loan? Would I be willing to shift my home loan?

 Then, why don't they create more touch points to cross sell or up sell their products? I am not generalizing here to include all companies. But many companies implement CRM without addressing core purpose and vitality of leveraging data inputs. A BI tool can provide hundreds of insights which a bank or vehicle manufacturer can leverage. however, companies run blind campaigns from their CRM and they end up in junk mail. They call customer routinely and the calls turn out to be only routine.

Continuing and meaningful data is key and standalone CRM provide very little value addition.

'Subbu' Balakrishnan | EPM and BI CoE

'Subbu' is a qualified Cost & Works Accountant, Company Secretary and Law Graduate, with more than 20 years experience in operations and IT.

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