July 10, 2018

Smart business development needs different approaches

Markku Luoma-aho

Director, Tieto Financial Services strategic sales and solutions, Tieto Financial Services

Financial services companies are eager to develop their businesses, but success requires you to match the method to the target.

Nordic financial service companies are undergoing a renaissance, driven by new competitors, new technology, new ways of doing business and new regulations. This makes the industry a fertile field for business development, such as finding growth through new channels or business lines, or vastly increasing efficiency.

Know your goals in a constantly changing business environment

The first task in any business development process is to define your goals. Perhaps you are looking for new services to boost growth or you want to increase profitability by improving efficiency. Or maybe you have other goals not directly earnings related. Tieto helps you define goals that differentiate you from the competition.

The key point is you need different methods to achieve different goals. Goals of increased sales and decreased expenses are not necessarily mutually exclusive, but they are aimed at different results.

Choose the ways to get there

There are different ways to boost your business development towards your targeted levels. Can you do it all in-house or do you rely on outside vendors? There are pros and cons to each way, depending upon the targeted change, the customer and the vendor, among other things.

Typically you see a mixture: agile in-house development and smart use of consultants. To achieve a short time to market you commonly require smart partnering with someone like Tieto who has the muscle and experience to quickly deliver quality results.

Simultaneously you need to decide upon the process. Do you use the traditional business development method or new ways of working, such as agile development? Don’t fall for the agile development hype, because in some cases the traditional way of development yields superior results. You need discipline and focused leadership in the agile way of working, or else you might not see results at all.

The financial service industry has unique requirements in what exactly you develop. If you want your own platform you might lose time and money. An alternative is the cloud, but you could have some geographic limitations.

Nurture the required skills

Tieto has over 50 years of experience in the financial services industry, as well as a deep knowledge of many other industries. We share your goals, so Tieto can help you define and find the way of working and skills you need.

Innovative skills are often in demand, but you also want a good dose of practicality and common sense. Clever is good, but it is possible to be too clever in this business.

Collaboration is extremely important. If there is no clearly stated business development goal and method you tend to see every business area being responsible for their own development. If there is a lack of continuous discussion between different business units you have major challenges to implement your strategy.

Getting the results

Define the direction, learn your own best way of working, choose a partner based on the needed expertise, pick development platforms based on business requirements, believe in your selections and regularly measure the results so you can make the required improvements.

To learn more about how Tieto can help you with business development, please contact me  to set up an appointment. Tieto believes the entire business development process hinges upon the right partner and we are ready to prove we can be your partner.

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