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Bank uses BVS management system to enhance customer relationships.

It's not just the service you give customers, it's how you give it to them. That mantra is the primary idea behind BVS Performance Systems' (Cedar Rapids, Iowa) Sales Incentive and Information Management System (SIIMS). It's also the reason First National Bank of Olathe (Kansas City, $500 million in assets) turned to BVS when the bank began searching for a business intelligence system to improve customer service.

Improving employee performance is key to keeping customers coming back, according to Roy Karon, president of BVS. "The difference between banks is people - how they work and how well they execute," he says.

Cross with Cross-Selling

To build on customer relationships, First National Bank of Olathe needed to revamp its incentive program and track customer data electronically, according to Karen Chastain, the bank's vice president of retail services. She believes that cross-selling alone isn't a solid technique for gaining new customers. She wanted a product that could keep the bank up to date with customer needs so sales representatives would be aware of customer behavior.

"I felt that tracking cross-sell was never the correct measurement for sales," says Chastain. "It should be about building relationships. And although you can start that with the first sale, it's the follow-up that comes after - and once you have established something with [the customer], they may continue to come back to buy one or two more products at a time."

Frontline Efforts

All bank employees have access to the Web-based SIIMS system and can enter information about customers who are looking for a new banking product, such as a consumer loan. Employees actively contribute to customer-building efforts. They are acknowledged simply for entering a customer into the system and receive additional credit when a sale is closed, Chastain says. The bank prints reports to point out the employees who are actively making referrals. Supervisors also review new sales in front of the staff, emphasizing the contributions of employees.

"We want to build relationships and reward our employees for helping us to build those relationships," Chastain explains. "We want to let every employee know that no matter what their job is, there is the opportunity to help us establish those relationships."

Prior to implementing the SIIMS system last September, the financial institution used a manual system that collected information on new accounts only, Chastain says. The new system is multifunctional, with a library for storage of all types of documents, including employee and compliance manuals. It is compatible with Microsoft Office documents.

First National Bank of Olathe had an existing relationship with BVS when it chose the SIIMS program. According to Chastain, since the bank already used BVS' tutorial program, employees at the bank were familiar with the technology, and there was no need for extensive training. "Because of our already established relationship, we thought it was a good fit," she explains.

The system has not only motivated employees to bring in new customers to the bank, Chastain says, but it has also complemented the bank's recent change in its customer-service mission. "We have a new vision statement," she adds. "It says, 'Growing a great community relationship one at a time.' So our theory is to be able to look and see if we were building our relationships and continually looking at the customers and continuing to grow that relationship."



Institution: First National Bank of Olathe (Kansas City).

Assets: $500 million.

Business Challenge: Update customer-information management to enhance customer relationships.

Solution: BVS' Sales Incentive and Information Management System (SIIMS).

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