A CRM for financial services transformation with Microsoft Dynamics 365, from the project management expert who supervised the successful process from installation to conclusion
At HSO, our feeling is that technology and the expert technical consultants that put it in to effect can help our customers conquer any obstacle. Our team has the technical expertise and attentiveness needed to navigate the most demanding situations. In this Challenge Accepted interview, Melanie Brooks, Senior Project Manager, will discuss how a client benefited by successfully replacing a legacy CRM they assumed was irreplaceable with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales.
Melanie Brooks, Senior Project Manager for HSO, shares how her organization helped a client move from a legacy system they trusted to a new financial services CRM, accessing a lucrative business channel in the process.
I’ve been working with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales for more than a decade. In fact, I’ve spent the vast majority of my career around Dynamics. Being the client’s primary contact for the entire process is what excites me. I’m the first person they’ll meet from our team and I’m responsible for assuring everything we do moves the client closer to their desired outcome. I enjoy being there from the beginning until they go live.
“I get to watch as the initial challenges they came to us with are already being solved at go live, knowing we played a part in how they have evolved.”
The Business Challenge: Move a client from a custom-made, legacy CRM for financial services they had relied on for 10 years to Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales and Service in only 6 months
When I think of my role, one particular client comes to mind. I primarily work with financial services firms and, for that industry, time is of the essence. We were contracted by a global investment firm with $25B AUM to replace a legacy system they had used for more than a decade. Since it was homegrown on premises, they had been able to customize every aspect to their needs.
The organization has three business channels: wholesalers/intermediaries, institutional clients, and private wealth clients. There were issues working effectively with the largest business channel, wholesalers/intermediaries, who are traditionally a challenging group to gain compliance. The current on-site system, which was antiquated and required significant support, could not meet changing needs and growth plans.
The first challenge was moving to Dynamics 365 Sales to use its power as a platform to retain as much of the homegrown system while taking advantage of modern technology. The client realized the goal should not be to replicate the current system, but rather, to look at what they could gain in addition to what they would be replacing.
Challenge Accepted: Retain the value of the current system and expand that value with a modern CRM solution
The challenge was to ensure we were replicating every requirement of their legacy system. Because it was a decade old, even employees who understood the current system did not realize the level of complexity behind these areas of functionality. Often someone would say, “Oh, we didn’t know it was also doing this.” So I think we were able to really improve what they had, but still deliver everything that they had and their original system as well.
We helped the client identify which features of the legacy system were truly needed. They recognized Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales could support them in other ways that were better for them. The client confirmed we’ve surpassed what they had with their legacy system while still giving them the same functionality they had before.
The Business Outcome: Company-wide transformation that is providing new opportunities
The new Dynamics 365 solution accomplished the transition and exceeded the client’s expectations. It actually replaced three solutions, which reduced maintenance and improved visibility across the organization. They can now see full portfolio, as well as, full fund and contact information every time a contact has been emailed, called, or contacted in any way. It’s all in one system and they’re able to quickly produce reports because they can get a full client view at very nearly the touch of a button.
The Dynamics 365 solution provided the functionality the firm needed and fundamentally changed the way the firm’s inside sellers engage with intermediaries. This more prescriptive, concrete approach created a management layer of segmentation and direction, which benefited both the firm and the intermediaries they work with. The insight Microsoft Dynamics 365 Sales is providing is also helping the firm uncover and pursue new opportunities, like the opportunity to grow their institutional business.
Is your financial services firm ready for transformation but need help with where to start? Tell us your story! Sign up for a Challenge Accepted Big Brain Session. We’ll connect you with one of our consultants to get you started.
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