BoV unveils result of eight-year revolutionary project to its teams
Bank of Valletta recently brought together its staff to celebrate an important milestone in its history: the culmination of an eight-year project to ensure that the bank remained completely focused on customers and their evolving needs through constant investment in innovation.
Years ago, it was understood that times were changing: Malta had joined the EU and the euro adoption was only a few years away.
The country’s traditional economic sectors were changing radically and manufacturing and heavy industry were being displaced by financial services and aviation, among other activities.
The bank’s executive committee, made up of its chief officers and the chief executive officer, spearheaded an ambitious programme of change which would ensure that the bank remained relevant to changing lifestyles and the more complex requirements of its customers, local and – increasingly – international.
“As the challenges increased, we started to ask: ‘How are we going to sustain our business model? How are we going to maintain our market shares and at the same time grow?’” chief executive officer Charles Borg told staff at the event.
“The answer was relatively simple: we needed to focus our energy on the customer. And so we embarked on an ambitious programme of change, which led to the creation of our brand promise, among other things.”
The brand promise was a clear statement of the values which drive everything the bank does: supportiveness, mutuality, long-term, straightforward and efficient, and added value.
These were translated into a day-to-day reality through a number of process improvements covering the entire range of the bank’s products and services, from cards to investments, from personal and business lending, to bancassurance and payments.
The most recent innovations were the launch of mobile banking, pre-paid cards and the new multi-channel strategy, which includes upgrading of ATMs, and the introduction of investment centres to bring together the best resources for people seeking investment advice.
As the eight-year project moved into its final stages, a new cycle of training revolving around the brand promise was conducted across the organisation to ensure that the momentum is maintained in the future.
Mr Borg believes that the project would not have been successful had it not been for the dedication and professionalism of the staff.
“I am constantly impressed by the dynamism of this group,” he said. “We talk about being innovative and customer-centric – but we don’t just talk. We deliver. Time and time again, I have seen teams from various departments put their heads together to find solutions to problems, to make suggestions and to create great new products and services. We can be justly proud of our achievements, which have won us international awards year after year. These were your successes – and our clients’ too as they were the ones who benefitted from them.”
A project of this nature does not have a beginning and end. The whole point of innovation is that it is ongoing and the bank is already looking forward. In the coming weeks, it will kickstart an analysis of its customer-facing business model, to ensure that it will be relevant to the needs of the future, now that retail banks are moving further and further from cash handling and more towards advisory services.
During the event, which was also addressed by chairman Frederick Mifsud Bonnici, the bank also revealed its new visual identity, a bold evolution of its well-established logo that better reflects its focus on innovation and customer-centricity.
“We made the changes of the past a reality by working as a team – and it is only fitting that we should make this next step once again working as a team,” Mr Borg explained.
“This is why we are all here today – to share this important occasion together. We are the bank, each and every one of us – and this new visual identity of our brand will accompany us into the future, supporting us to live the philosophy that our customer’s success is our goal.”