Banking, financial services and insurance sectors (BFSI) are in the throes of tumultuous changes leading to significant focus on ongoing training of the employees. Not only is there competition from within the sector to scale and garner maximum market shares in the shortest possible time but new digital service providers are springing up with new alternate options for customers.
Further to this, there are ongoing statutory and regulatory changes impacting the business necessitating new processes and compliance to be adhered The BFSI sector has been in the forefront of using the power of digital technology not only for creating superior customer experience, this sector also has recognised the advantage of using digital technologies for retooling and reskilling their employees. Given the large number of employees required to be trained, high levels of attrition particularly in sales roles and the challenges of geographic dispersion, technology led learning has been adopted by several organisations as the catalyst for talent transformation.
However, e-learning and other formats of digital training so far implemented have been mostly conceived by user organisations as the medium of delivering content that is efficient and cost effective. To compete with the emerging born-on the web-competitors, there is an urgent need to rethink not only ways of recruiting new talent for the digital world but also for leveraging the experience of existing talent pool and reskilling and retention of such talent all of which would call for new approaches.
In the insurance industry for instance, it is observed that there is very little contact with the broker in the period between the sale and the claim and this leads to the problem of how insurance agents are perceived by the customers. In the banking sector too, even today employees are used to customers walking into their branches to seek their services and many of them are not comfortable when they are mandated to seek out their customers proactively for their needs. The traditional approach of being seen as a trusted advisor has to be reiterated to win the customers' confidence and in the current competitive environment also enable the customers to choose the right products, provide new insights and guidance in the after-care following a claim or a deposit or purchase of any other offering.
To be able to do all of this, employees need to be trained to develop a better orientation of their customers and their needs, explore new digital marketplaces, increase customer intimacy through social media and figure out ways of proactive and not reactive contacts. With digital technologies it is now possible to mass customise learning and the time has come to replace content centric approach with learner specific approach. Employees or agents need to be trained to be confident and distinctive by equipping them with personalised dynamic content comprising of strategic indicators pertaining to the financials of the companies or the profiles of their customers or retention analytics on a just in time basis on their devices.
AI could be used to gauge their weaknesses in order to help bridge knowledge gaps as well as alert them to potential opportunities on a continual basis. They could be trained to use customer profiles, data and analytics to derive insights to determine cross sell and upsell opportunities. As the BFSI sector is moving towards omni channel strategy encouraging employees, agents and digital channel to work in tandem, all the stakeholders would require to be oriented to work in this new environment and for this the focus of training will have to be centered around the individuals and their need to become better at catering to the needs of their end customers.
(The writer is chairperson, Global Talent Track, a corporate training solutions company.)