Lessons in client service, by the big bank book

In his keynote address to delegates at the 2007 Lac Carling Congress, Wayne Bossert asserted the vision of Royal Bank as it relates to client service delivery.

Bossert, senior vice-president of service delivery with RBC Royal Bank, said its mantra was, “Always earning the right to be our client’s first choice.”

And being the first choice of the client was not always easy for RBC, as 2004 saw a flat trend in client loyalty, according to Bossert.

He said that some of the factors that contributed to this low period were competing priorities and organizational silos, not unlike those that occurred in the public sector, which aims to have a citizen-centred focus.

“Customers said we were getting increasingly difficult to do business with,” said Bossert. “We had to get back to the fundamentals and put the client first.”

The result of this back-to-basics approach was three key items in the bank’s business transformation, according to Bossert.

The first was to align the organization, which involved pulling together operational and technology capabilities in its global technology operations (GTO).

The remainder included identifying key financial objectives and transformational behaviours, which meant outfitting employees with the right skills and leadership, and empowering frontline customer staff.

“This client-first focus was placing employees at the centre of what they do, and ensuring that we had the collaboration, speed and agility to achieve that.”

Bossert said RBC’s GTO platform model was based on objectives that included a single point of accountability on all technology and operations decisions, and more streamlined decision-making.

He added that the GTO was created to ensure RBC was accountable on four strategic themes: