Most financial services firms pursue improvements to their business processes at two different levels. At the business unit level, managers must adapt processes quickly to resolve front-line needs like meeting customer expectations, introducing new products or opening new markets. Meanwhile, at the enterprise level, leaders must address demands that cut across business units, such as managing risk and compliance, improving customer experience, optimizing operational performance, and modernizing technology.
At most firms, we see process mapping and documentation initiated at the functional level, with each area sending representatives to investigate business units. As a result, business units answer questions and provide information multiple times for any given process. What’s more, each functional area develops its own process maps and documentation, as well as establishing metrics to ensure its initiatives achieve the desired outcomes. All of this causes unnecessary duplication, conflicting performance metrics, and significant inefficiencies.
Clearly, lack of a shared approach has created an expensive problem where different corporate goals are competing with each other.
We believe financial services organizations can and should create a shared approach for developing a common business process documentation framework and associated metrics. Going beyond coordination and joint process walkthroughs, it must be grounded in a common process and taxonomy that documents how the business works and how to productively drive change. To get the job done, we recommend that firms:
A shared mapping tool could highlight both key risk indicators and key performance indicators side-by-side, helping business unit and functional leaders understand tradeoffs for every action.
Once financial services organizations create a foundation for end-to-end, reusable process documentation, they can better understand their capabilities and gaps, enabling them to make appropriate, effective and timely adjustments. Additionally, they can improve change management efficiency as process adjustments are planned and deployed across multiple business units, rather than in a vacuum.
Partner, Digital Banking and FinTech, PwC US
Principal, FS Digital and Customer-Driven Transformations, PwC US
Director, PwC US