Financial service firms face several challenges, with risks and priorities shifting as the landscape continues to evolve. Many of these challenges have been further hampered by the need for remote management of teams, whilst trying to remain secure and maximising business profitability.
FinancialForce Professional Services Automation (PSA) represents an opportunity for financial service firms to transform their service and project management processes. In this article we explore 5 ways that PSA can address challenges faced by financial service firms and transform their overall business.
1. PLAN FOR A GROWTH FUTURE WITH EFFECTIVE SERVICES FORECASTING
For many financial services businesses, forecasting your pipeline can be difficult. With overlapping projects, resource clashes, or gaps in the business where some teams are overloaded and others are under-utilised. With many teams looking to a combination of home and office working, the ability to manage the time and utilisation of teams is more difficult - but with PSA that is all resolved.
See a complete picture of your service delivery, with utilisation rates, allocations and forecasting plans. Identify under utilised resources before it’s too late and determine when extra resources or skills might be needed to support new accounts, projects or busy periods. See the skills and certifications of all consultants to allocate the right people to the right projects and build development plans to support future projects and services.
Make better use of your best resources and maximise profitability. Through resource forecasting and sales alignment, you can maximise utilisation and drive sales teams to focus on converting opportunities that will allocate resources with availability. With PSA you can take control of your service planning and ensure that the business is maximising resource potential.
2. MAXIMISE PROFITABILITY & GET PAID QUICKER
Do you experience delays in payment due to gaps in the business where projects have ended or contracts have been fulfilled but the finance team is unaware? Are you unaware of how profitable a contract is until revenue has been recognised? Do you experience revenue leakage due to projects and services not being properly aligned to billing?
With PSA, project and service billing is embedded in the system to speed up the payment process and eliminate revenue leakage.
Ensure that the invoicing amounts align with the service utilisation and agreed scope of work. Set triggers against project stages to automate the billing process when key criteria are met. Align service schedules with payment triggers to ensure that you keep cash flow high and avoid any missed payments.
With real-time reporting, the profitability of service contracts and projects can be accessed anytime and corrective action can betaken if the profitability of projects drops below target levels. Make sure all your hard work is realised, and streamline processes from opportunity to revenue recognition.
3. ACCESS INSIGHTS TO OPTIMISE SERVICE DELIVERY
We all know the answer very often lies in the data and for financial service companies, using and understanding data is a core part of their business. However, even though financial services organisations often rely on data to empower decisions, this same logic is often not applied to optimising the business and operational performance. But with so much data available and so many platforms in use, how can you know where to focus your attention?
With Einstein and PSA analytics, you can let the system do the hard work for you. With everything managed on one platform, AI and analytics can be used to identify new trends, highlight areas for improvement and recognise new opportunities.
Focus your efforts on areas that will drive growth and don’t be distracted by the amount of data. With customisable reports and dashboards, all team members can be focused on maximising business performance and driving key KPIs. Keep the team focused and use the data wisely to drive growth across the business.
4. TRANSFORM YOUR CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE
Are you creating a difficult environment between sales and service delivery due to sales pushing opportunities where resources are maxed out? Are your teams constantly chasing people to get updates on the customer? A recent article by Technorely places customer retention and customer experience as two of the main challenges facing the financial service industry. With PSA you can empower the sales team, avoid conflicts, improve communication and therefore improve the overall customer experience.
Eliminate broken processes and get sales, service and finance on the same team, with one complete customer record which enables anyone to deliver updates around resource availability, project status, and billing timelines. Built natively on the Salesforce platform, the customer records can be centralised meaning that teams do not have to manually enter data several times and can have confidence that the data is correct and complete.
For financial services companies, competition is fiercer than ever and PSA can help improve customer retention rates. Automate processes, speed up delivery, reduce manual tasks, and ensure that each customer gets regular updates about their service. which improves communication and drives a better customer experience.
5. KEEP YOUR DATA SECURE IN A REMOTE WORLD
A major challenge for financial services organisations is data security and in particular ensuring that client data is not compromised. A survey from Boston Consulting Group says that Financial Service organisations are 300 times more likely to experience cyberattacks – more than any other sector.
Over the last year, with many companies shifting to home offices, the demand for remotely accessible information has increased, but this does not outweigh the need for data to remain secure. As a cloud solution, PSA uses real-time data and is accessible from anywhere. Built natively on the Salesforce platform, FinancialForce PSA benefits from the comprehensive privacy and security assessments of the Salesforce platform so you can be confident that your data and in particular, your client’s data, is secure. To learn more about the certifications of the Salesforce platform click here.
HOW CAN ION HELP?
ION is a team of cloud technology specialists that align with a number of market-leading solutions to help businesses deliver business and financial transformation. Trusted partners of FinancialForce and Salesforce Silver Partners, our team is made up of specialists in cloud accounting, billing, revenue, integrated CRM and PSA.
To learn more about PSA, click here, or contact our team for a no-obligation discussion or free personalised demo of FinancialForce PSA.