No duplication allowed
Cholamandalam AMC (CAMC), an asset management company, was
looking for a solution that would allow it to consolidate its expanding customer
base. Sneha Khanna finds out how they went about fixing the problem
Cholamandalam AMC manages mutual funds for retail and institutional
investors. Managing a large customer base, consolidating it and avoiding duplication
were the challenges for the company. The company opted for a Customer Interaction
Management (CIM) solution to sort out these issues.
Market Driven Needs
Faced with the challenge of attracting and retaining customers
in a fiercely competitive market, the CAMC felt the need to have a reliable
and consolidated database. The companys transaction processing is handled
by a company called the Computer Age Management Services.
As per the companys guidelines they needed to follow
certain patterns. For example, details like name, folio number, calls or e-mail
had to be categorised into a finite set of options. Apart from that, they needed
to fulfil some of the customer redressal and reporting requirements set up by
The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI). The company also felt the
need to reach out to their investors more effectively through customer-focussed
To fulfil these requirements, CAMC needed a solution which
could give them a 360 degree view of their customers. Says Sashi Krishnan, Chief
Executive, Cholamandalam AMC, CAMC needed a solution to give us a better
perspective of our investors.
The company also wanted to track the investor queries more
efficiently. Says Krishnan, We wanted to know our investors better so
that we could address their needs within given time periods. We also wanted
to track the time our company takes to resolve the investor grievances.
The biggest challenge that the company faced was to identify
each investor as a unique stakeholder irrespective of his or her investments
in different schemes. While identifying a customer might seem simple from a
laymans perspective, it is quite a complex task for a company with a large
Take the example of a customer who registers under different
funds. At the time of registering for different funds, he might register himself
under slightly different names (For eg, Ashish Kapoor v/s Ashish V Kapoor).
Due to these differences, the company many face problems of locating the customer
records the next time he calls. CAMC needed a consolidated database to avoid
such issues and correctly track the customer.
- The company: Cholamandalam AMC
(CAMC), an asset management company offering mutual funds to retail
and institutional investors.
- The need: To consolidate their customer
base and have a unique identification for each investor as various investments
are classified under different folios.
- The solution: Talisma's CIM suite
Finding the Right Partner
Before going in for a solution provider CAMC had certain
basic requirements. The company needed a service provider who could offer customisation
and understood the mutual fund business.
Says Krishnan, After comparing our companys requirements
with various solutions from different companies, we found that Talisma matched
CAMC is currently using Talismas modules from the CIM
suite consisting of:
- Talisma Service
- Talisma Sales
- Talisma Campaign
- Talisma E-mail Response Management
Started in April 2005, the project took four months and was
completed in July 2005. This is the shortest implementation timeline,
remarks Krishnan. It was made possible by Talismas expertise in
this field. They have done similar deployments at other financial services companies
including some projects for the asset management sector, he adds.
A Phased Approach
The project was implemented in two phases. While implementing
the first phase, it was divided into three steps. In the first step there was
a system study of CAMC conducted by the Talisma Team.
Says Krishnan, A team from Talisma came to our office
and conducted the system study. After detailed discussions with the functional
and systems team, a tentative time table for the project to go live was fixed.
Using de-duplicating algorithms, engineers removed errors and folio-duplications
in the companys database.
In the second step of the first phase the companys
specifications were finalised and frozen. Says Krishnan, The specifications
were frozen and the design got underway. They came up with a detailed specifications
document, which was signed off by CAMC and Talisma. After the data clean
up, database consolidation was performed to create a single folio number for
The last step of the first phase was to test user acceptance
modules by the CAMC team. A detailed user acceptance and stress level
testing was conducted by the project team, consisting of the sales and the service
functions at the Talisma premises in Bangalore, adds Krishnan.
After testing completion, a time table for the next stage
was drawn. After completion of the first phase, sales and service users started
using the data at few locations.
Going Live Throughout
In the projects second phase, data was tested and imported
into the Talismas system. Says Krishnan, In this phase, there was
testing to import customer data into Talismas system.
Initially the data was uploaded day wise and then compared
with the database maintained by the registrar. This process took about
a week to ten days. After that the system was ready to go online with live data,
says Krishnan. After the system went online, it was extended to more locations.
Talisma provides frequent software updates to CAMC. Says
Krishnan, CAMC is confident that Talisma can provide the necessary feature
upgrades as per CAMCs business strategy. SLAs for the product are as per
agreement between the two parties from time to time.
|In the two phases several exercises were carried
- Data import from third-party database, followed
- Contact creation, classification and management module.
- Customer service moduleImpleme-ntation of service request fulfilment
- Lead management module.
- Campaign management module (outbound e-mail campaigns).
Talisma initially faced some challenges while consolidating
CAMCs customer database. They needed to create a unique identity of each
of their customers.
Says Krishnan, Each investor of Cholamandalam needed
unique identification since various investments are classified under different
folios. Another challenge was to identify a investor even if he does not
quote his folio number at the time of the call.
Talisma solutions helped CAMC handle its customers better
by tracking their transactions with the company. By deploying Talisma
solutions we are able to track all our customer interactions, says Krishnan.
Another benefit is customer identification even with minimum
details like scheme and folio. Talismas solutions have helped us
create a unique identity for each investor, says Krishnan.
Apart from that, Krishnan feels that with regards to sales,
it has helped the company manage potential sales leads at various stages. On
the marketing front, the company has benefited by its capability to send regular
personalised mailers to investors.