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How Raiffeisen built a digital factory for banking innovation

Turning a 20-year-old tech stack and five apps into one streamlined platform isn’t easy. And yet, Raiffeisen was able to pull it off.

by Michiel den Nieuwenboer

Introduction

As one of the largest banks in Switzerland, Raiffeisen’s digital channels are under constant pressure, and they have been for years. A decade ago, a monolithic tech infrastructure and various separate apps were allowing them to deliver adequate service. But as time went on, Raiffeisen realized they needed a single, streamlined platform to cover all customer — and employee — needs if they wanted to meet their ambitious goals for growth.

The problem? Their in-house teams didn’t have the resources or experience to pull it off on their own. And when you consider the fact that Raiffeisen is made up of 220 independent banks, each with its own restrictions, the project becomes even more complex. More than just an IT solutions provider, they needed a real business partner that would help them boost agility and demonstrate incremental results from the get-go. And that’s where we came in.

Together, Raiffeisen and Backbase embarked on the bank’s biggest digitalization project to date — creating an omnichannel banking platform. 

As Raiffeisen’s David Schlösser, Transformation Stream Lead Client Experience, noted in his ENGAGE keynote, the scale of the project demanded short innovation time cycles to demonstrate value to shareholders and the boardroom. And if they couldn’t make that work? Then the project would flounder and die. Time to market was a crucial factor, but that’s not easy with such a large-scale transformation. But by using our out-of-the-box journeys and platform capabilities, Raiffeisen was able to deliver an MVP version within a matter of months, rolling it out to a few users and then iterating from there.

David said the bank’s speed of delivery has improved significantly. Back in 2019 when he started with Raiffeisen, they were limited to two releases a year. Now, they successfully deliver updates every six to eight weeks, allowing them to react swiftly to changes and market demands.

Another key concern was scalability. Raiffeisen currently has around 1.5 million clients on their platform, with the goal of increasing this to 2 million by 2025. That means they needed an open, agile architecture they could use to deliver exceptional customer service both now and well into the future. And with our composable platform fabric and over 400 capabilities, they’re able to rapidly create tailored, differentiating financial experiences, ensuring they’re prepared for today but also the years to come.

It’s hard to overstate how far Raiffeisen has come over the last year. Not so long ago, their “digital onboarding” journey, for example, consisted of filling out a contact form on the website. Then, the bank would contact you and arrange for a video chat, after which you would have to fill out form after form after form. Now, they’re able to boast a fast, seamless onboarding journey that eliminates the bulk of the tedium, making digital account-opening a breeze.

And they’re not finished yet. Raiffeisen will continue leveraging our modular platform components, as needed, and then focus on building exceptional experiences on top. With our help, they’ve successfully built a digital factory that allows them to compete with the very best players on the market — all while renewing their laser focus on the needs of their customers.

Want to learn more about the power of a single-platform model? Check out the blog about how you can unlock maximum value for your retail bank and its customers.