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Bob Meara

March 2015

This is an authorized reprint from a Celent report

profiling Model Bank initiatives. This excerpt was

prepared for Infosys, but the analysis has not

been changed. For more information about the full

report see www.celent.com.


Case Studies in Omnichannel Banking ............................................................................... 1

Standard Bank of South Africa: Guided Sales Workbench ............................................. 1

Leveraging Celent’s Expertise ............................................................................................ 6

Support for Financial Institutions ..................................................................................... 6

Support for Vendors ........................................................................................................ 6

Related Celent Research .................................................................................................... 7



Established in 1862, Standard Bank of British South Africa has grown into Standard Bank

Group, the largest African bank group by assets and earnings, with total assets of R1.5

trillion (US$183 billion) and approximately 49,000 employees. Standard Bank of South

Africa, one of Standard Bank Group’s subsidiaries, is joined by Stanbic IBTC, Standard

International Holdings, and Liberty Holdings. The bank now known as Standard Bank

was formed in 1962 as a South African subsidiary of Standard Bank Group, under the

name Standard Bank of South Africa. It operates in South Africa and 17 countries in sub-

Saharan Africa, offering personal, business and commercial banking, corporate and

investment banking, and wealth management services.

Table 1: Standard Bank of South Africa Snapshot

THROUGH 12/31/2014




49,000 employees

US$162 billion assets

15.5 million personal banking clients in Africa

Countries: 20



Johannesburg, South Africa

1,283 branches throughout 18 African countries

9,300 ATMs

Internet, mobile and call center

Source: Standard Bank of South Africa

Standard Bank transformed its sales force through deploying a comprehensive Guided

Sales Workbench on mobile tablets alongside business process redesign without a ripand-replace

of legacy systems. It has done so supporting Personal and Private Banking

lines of business, as well as Business Banking and Offshore. Prior to the rollout of the

mobile sales force application, Standard Bank had no capability to support proactive

acquisition of customers remotely.


Many sub-Saharan markets in which Standard Bank operates are characterized by dense

urban population centers separated by wide areas of low-income, rural, transportationchallenged

populations (see Figure 1 on Page 2). These characteristics limit the

effectiveness of retail branch and ATM network coverage beyond urban and suburban

markets, while increasing the importance of remote sales operations.

Chapter: Case Studies in Omnichannel Banking

Figure 1: Standard Bank Enjoys a Substantial Sub-Saharan Footprint

Source: Standard Bank of South Africa

Remote sales operations have been challenging, in part, because systems and workflow

supporting selling and acquiring was historically paper based. Sales Agents had to handdeliver

documents to Head Office, Branch Fulfillment Centers, or Operations Processing

Centers for fulfillment. The key challenges in this approach were:

1. The process relied heavily on the Sales Agent’s knowledge and experience with

the various products available across multiple customer segments. This

introduced a great deal of variability.

2. The lack of broad based proactive understanding of customer’s needs resulted in

inconsistent cross-selling of products and higher selling costs.

3. Most compliance-related issues were noticed during fulfillment due to incomplete

capture of information or lack of enforcement in the physical (paper-based)

forms. This in turn resulted in multiple visits to the customer leading to poor

customer experience, lower productivity, and higher turnaround time (TAT).


Chapter: Case Studies in Omnichannel Banking

With this opportunity, Standard Bank sought to be the first bank to roll out a mobile

salesforce application in Africa. In so doing, it meant to equip its sales force with the right

tools and support materials to engage customers professionally in order to maximize

sales opportunities at first customer contact, improving sales results while providing a

superior customer experience. Standard Bank’s secondary objectives were to minimize

the administrative burden through automated data capture and improved compliance.

Sales & Service Enablement

Standard Bank developed a framework designed to deliver a superior and consistent

customer experience. Sales & Service Enablement is a strategic, ongoing process

adopted by Standard Bank to equip customer-facing employees with the ability to

consistently and systematically have valuable conversations with appropriate customer

stakeholders at each stage of the customer’s problem-solving lifecycle in order to

optimize the return of investment. The framework directs both the selling process (Figure

2) and the sales management process.

Figure 2: Standard Bank’s Sales & Service Enablement Framework

Source: Standard Bank of South Africa

The challenge was to equip Standard Bank’s mobile sales force with the tools necessary

to deliver this objective.


The Sales Force Enablement Application is a native iPad application developed using

Objective C and Xcode IDE. Both Sales Agents and customers interact with the

application and benefit from a guided sales process.

The Customer's private and confidential information captured during the guided sales

process is stored securely in iPad's local SQLite Database. This information is encrypted

using “AES 128 bit” algorithm and is purged once the completed application forms are

sent for fulfillment, improving security.

Subversion (SVN) is used for configuration management during development. The

installable file (ipa) is generated using Standard Bank's provisioning profile, and the final

build is uploaded onto the Amazon Cloud for each country.

Using this solution, the remote sales force can complete all required documentation and

necessary customer details, including electronic signatures, in a single meeting.


Chapter: Case Studies in Omnichannel Banking

Application forms are then automatically compressed into PDF format and emailed for

processing, with copies also emailed to the customer for record-keeping. This approach,

while not technically elegant, allowed Standard Bank to roll out the application in quick

fashion with minimal legacy system integration and without needing to rip-and-replace.

This hastened the availability of the application and accelerated project payback.

Another key advantage of the app-based tool is its predictive ability, using variables such

as a customer's monthly salary, profession, and net worth to immediately prescribe a set

of products suitable for their financial needs. This has increased Standard Bank’s

average product-per-customer sales in key African markets. Further, since not all sales

agents are qualified to sell and provision all products in Standard Bank’s portfolio, the

application instantly pushes referrals to appropriate colleagues to ensure prompt followup

by Product Specialists. Figure 3 illustrates key benefits of the Sales Force Enablement

Application alongside screen shots.

Figure 3: Sales Force Enablement Application Offers Sales Agents a Powerful Set of Tools

Source: Standard Bank of South Africa

The application is helpful to both managers and salespeople in effectively managing the

sales process and pipeline. Through real-time data collection and analysis, managers

have a dynamic view of their RMs’ sales performance, enabling them to quickly identify

areas for improvement and deliver coaching.


The project used agile (SCRUM) methodology, resulting in a highly collaborative mobile

application development. This provided much-needed flexibility in catering to

requirements changes which could not have been perceived at the start of the project. In

particular, it was important to create a framework that would support the rollout of multiple

countries, each with unique business processes, regulations, standards, and compliance.

For example, all the country-related artifacts (brochures, products and features,

application forms, calculators, etc.) were designed to be configurable. The business rules

and guided sales process were both uniquely incorporated as part of the country-specific

business logic that was built directly as Code.


Chapter: Case Studies in Omnichannel Banking

The sales app and tablet technology was piloted in Ghana, Tanzania, and Angola in

August 2012, and they have since released an updated version, which is now fully

operational for Personal Markets in Angola, Botswana, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi,

Namibia, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe, with DRC going live in

May 2015. Standard Bank also deployed a tailored version of this solution to service SME

customers across Africa. Unique regulatory requirements of each market impose unique

design and testing requirements, complicating the rollout across Standard Bank’s

sprawling footprint.

The project supported a staggered delivery across 12 countries covering Personal and

Private Banking customer segments beginning in April 2013 and completed by March

2014. Each country was rolled out in a period of one month. A subsequent phase of this

project is presently being executed to support Business Banking and Offshore Banking

customer segments from November 2013 onwards (see Figure 4).

Figure 4: Multi-Phase Rollout for Guided Sales Workbench

Source: Standard Bank of South Africa and Infosys


Within a very short timeframe, the Standard Bank and Infosys team conceptualized the

tools and utilities that would empower the sales force to proactively and remotely acquire

customers, and cross-sell products and services based on profiles of the customers and

prospects. The solution is used to service personal banking, high net worth, and

bancassurance customers in eight countries with 406 tablets in use with another 1,000

deployments to follow. Thus far, the results have been noteworthy.

In Ghana (pilot market), the bank exceeded its target of attracting 17,900 new

customers to the bank, with a remarkable 17,400 customers who have switched their

salaried accounts to the bank using the Sales Tablet.

New customer provisioning TAT improved from five days to same-day on average.

Anticipating further expansion, Standard Bank is piloting a tailored version of this solution

to service SME customers in Ghana, Kenya, and Uganda. Following completion of

additional business process management initiatives, Standard Bank plans to enhance

product provisioning workflow of the Guided Sales Workbench, which will further reduce

TAT and cost per product provisioned through streamlining back office processes.


Chapter: Leveraging Celent’s Expertise


If you found this report valuable, you might consider engaging with Celent for custom

analysis and research. Our collective experience and the knowledge we gained while

working on this report can help you streamline the creation, refinement, or execution of

your strategies.


Typical projects we support include:

Vendor short listing and selection. We perform discovery specific to you and your

business to better understand your unique needs. We then create and administer a

custom RFI to selected vendors to assist you in making rapid and accurate vendor


Business practice evaluations. We spend time evaluating your business processes.

Based on our knowledge of the market, we identify potential process or technology

constraints and provide clear insights that will help you implement industry best practices.

IT and business strategy creation. We collect perspectives from your executive team,

your front line business and IT staff, and your customers. We then analyze your current

position, institutional capabilities, and technology against your goals. If necessary, we

help you reformulate your technology and business plans to address short-term and longterm



We provide services that help you refine your product and service offerings.

Examples include:

Product and service strategy evaluation. We help you assess your market position in

terms of functionality, technology, and services. Our strategy workshops will help you

target the right customers and map your offerings to their needs.

Market messaging and collateral review. Based on our extensive experience with your

potential clients, we assess your marketing and sales materials—including your website

and any collateral.


Chapter: Related Celent Research


Celent Model Bank 2015: Part 1: Case Studies of Digital Banking

March 2015

Celent Model Bank 2015: Part 3: Case Studies of Innovation and Emerging Technology

March 2015

Celent Model Bank 2015: Part 4: Case Studies of Legacy & Ecosystem Transformation

March 2015

Celent Model Bank 2015: Part 5: Case Studies of Payments Innovation

March 2015

How One Bank Changed a Nation: A Case Study of Commercial Bank of Africa’s

M-Shwari Initiative

May 2014

Celent Model Bank 2014: Part 1: Case Studies of Digital and Omnichannel Banking

April 2014

Celent Model Bank 2014: Part 2: Case Studies of Innovation and Emerging Technology

April 2014

Celent Model Bank 2014: Part 3: Case Studies of Legacy & Ecosystem Transformation

April 2014

Celent Model Bank 2014: Part 4: Case Studies of Payments Innovation

April 2014

Celent Model Bank 2014: Part 5: Case Studies of Innovation in Cash Management

April 2014

Celent Model Bank 2013: Case Studies of Effective Use of Technology in Banking

February 2013

Celent Model Bank 2012: Case Studies of Effective Use of Technology in Banking

June 2012

Celent Model Bank 2011: Case Studies of Effective Use of Technology in Banking

May 2011

Celent Model Bank 2010: Case Studies of Effective Use of Technology in Banking

May 2010

Celent Model Bank 2009: Case Studies of Effective Use of Technology in Banking

May 2009

Celent Model Bank 2008: Case Studies of Effective Use of Technology in Banking

March 2008


Chapter: Related Celent Research


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Bob Meara




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