As a direct bank with branch operations, Sparda- Bank Baden-Württemberg wants to combine the human element with digital technology. Based on the UCC platform Avaya Aura and video solution Scopia, the financial institution has opened a new, personal contact channel for its customers: account opening by video, unique on the German banking scene. Whether young or old, this service has received a positive response from customers. They enjoy the benefits of customer care without barriers such as a long journey or finding a parking space.
“The digitalization of business and society continues to advance. We want to keep up with this development to offer our customers new communication and sales channels and thus choice and freedom,” is how Stefan Bisterfeld outlines one of his key areas of responsibility as head of direct sales at Sparda-Bank Baden-Württemberg eG. “We had the idea of combining the advantages of personal contact with the current technical possibilities to offer the customer account opening via video consultation.” The fact that the customer has a working checking account immediately after the conversation is unique in the banking world.
The association of Sparda banks consists of twelve independent institutions. “With total assets of around 14 billion euros, we are the largest Sparda bank in the association,” explains Bisterfeld. The various Sparda banks are connected via a common data center, Sparda-Daten-Verarbeitung GmbH in Nuremberg. Based on Avaya Aura, the data center provides each Sparda bank with unified communication services in a private cloud environment.
In addition, in the 1990s, several Sparda banks founded Sparda-Telefonservice GmbH in St. Ingbert as a centralized call center for first-level support. The current existing solution is to be replaced in 2016 by Avaya Interaction Center - where the entire routing of incoming calls runs via the unified communications platform at the Nuremberg data center.
“We take on more complex service requests or further consultations with our customers ourselves,” continues Birgit Wößner, who runs the Sparda-Bank Baden-Württemberg call center in Karlsruhe. “St. Ingbert passes these calls onto us as second-level support. In addition, we also have our own input channels.” Since 2012, Sparda-Bank Baden-Württemberg has used Avaya Aura for its advisory call center. “Our 36 advisors in Karlsruhe all use the Avaya solution and process requests simultaneously on the Avaya one-X Agent desktop application. The solution is implemented centrally at the Nuremberg data center, we use the features via our IP network.”
As head of the advisory call center, Birgit Wößner observes the digital transition of communication behavior in the economy and society very closely. And, like Stefan Bisterfeld, she sees great opportunities in using digital technologies to strengthen personal contact with customers. “Using video, the customer can almost invite the advisor into their living room from the comfort of their own armchair, and so dispenses with the long journey and having to find a parking space,” is how Wößner describes the basic idea of the new communication and sales channel. And Stefan Bisterfeld adds: “With the project we did not want to open up a quantifiable business area, but firstly gain experience in how our customers and staff accept the issue of video.”