Your Back Office: The Missing Piece of Great CX

Mary Lou JosephOctober 21, 2022

Recently, Verint’s Nicole Nevulis, Senior Director of Go-to-Market Strategy, was interviewed by The Financial Brand’s Jim Marous on the impact the back office has on banking customer experience. You can listen to the full podcast here: Your Back Office: The Missing Piece of Great CX

Following are some highlights from that interview.

Connecting the Back Office to CX

Jim Marous: The role and value of the back office has reached new heights. What was once perceived as a support function and a cost center is now an integral part of making a better customer experience and an overall success metric for a financial institution. But back-office employees usually don’t directly engage with the customer. So how can they contribute to the customer experience?

Nicole Nevulis: We recently did a survey called Verint Experience Index: Banking Report 2022.  We found that 44% of contacts that were not handled by self-service were related to delays and errors in the back office.  So even if they’re not talking to the customer, the back office has a huge impact on the customer journey. When digging deeper, we want to understand are they processing things on time? Did they process it with the right quality?

Impact of Back Office on CX

Jim Marous: What are some of the typical issues that you see in the back office that create negative customer experiences?

Nicole Nevulis: When we’re not making account updates properly or entering in a transaction incorrectly, when we don’t have a seamless link across all of our back offices, or our processes are complex and not intuitive—all result in errors, delays and rework.

Applying Automation

Jim Marous: Well, it’s interesting, the back-office problems that you mention are not new to the banking industry, but what is new is the ability to automate certain processes and integrate the human aspect to those automated processes. How do you draw the line between what should be automated and digital and what’s human?

Nicole Nevulis: Automation is about augmenting the human. It’s about enabling the manager and employee to make faster and more accurate decisions. So instead of trying to juggle fire drills, I can focus more on creating great experiences with my employees and customers.

With regards to drawing the line between what’s automated and what’s human, it is really around looking at what requires knowledge and what requires being able to have empathy when looking at a situation.

Here’s an example of automation that makes everybody’s lives easier and improves employee engagement. We have a mobile workforce management app. I can easily take my phone and look at my performance remotely. I can sign up for a shift in the back office or ask for time off, all from my phone.  It provides instant information to the employee. At the same time, it’s freeing the managers up from managing excel spreadsheets or other manual tools they use for scheduling.

The Role of Automation

Jim Marous: Well, it’s interesting, because a lot of people believe, especially employees of financial institutions, that the digitalization and automation of processes is going to equal the elimination of jobs. In our experience, the research we’ve done, I’d like to know from your standpoint if you’ve seen the same thing, that it’s not about the elimination of jobs. It’s about the upgrading of jobs to being more impactful and actually more meaningful for the employee. Automation enables employees to do more of what they were really hired to do, which was help the customer.

Nicole Nevulis: It really has been about answering the questions: How can we make it easier? How can we compress time to service? How can we create margin? And as you said how can we free people up to do more meaningful work? What that has created is employees doing more engaging work, more meaningful work, as well as organizations seeing maybe not as much of a distinction between back office and contact center work.

People are now able to expand their skills to engage in more channels or have more variety in the types of work they do.

Trends Going Forward
Jim Marous: Okay, so final question is, as we look forward, what do you see as a trend or a couple trends that financial institutions are going to see as they try to integrate their front office and back office for improved customer experience?

Nicole Nevulis: I see organizations embracing a One Workforce approach, which is leveraging employees across the organization to support the customer.  The fact is that customers want to interact on their own channel of choice, and they want to be able to pick up conversations where they left off. Financial services are going to need to supply their employees with the tools they need to get the job done well, no matter where they sit in the organization. That involves real-time support and guidance as well as centralized knowledge resources to quickly answer questions and really bolster employee confidence.

Organizationally, FIs will want to look at ways that they can attract and retain top talent. To do so, they need to ask these fundamental questions: How do we become an employer of choice? How do we provide job mobility? How are we improving collaboration? How are we bringing in the right candidates? Really having a fully connected experience is where these organizations are going.

Jim and Nicole discuss more topics such as Robotic Process Automation, the Great Resignation, and scaling automation. Click here to hear to full podcast.

For more information on Verint® Workforce Management for Back Office solutions, visit www.verint.com/backoffice.