Reasons why

The JSE Client Services team is harnessing the power of data to provide integrated answers to inquiries

Reasons why

Being SA’s oldest – and Africa’s biggest – stock exchange, the JSE has a very wide client base. ‘Clients ask us all sorts of questions,’ says Grace Brown, the JSE’s Client Services Head. ‘It could be anything from technical questions about which trading platform they should use, to basic questions about where to find a stockbroker.’ 

To answer the more basic questions, the JSE’s website includes FAQs, based on inquiries asked by clients. ‘They’ll ask us about industry jargon – “What’s a bull market? What’s a yield curve?” – so we’ve created that FAQ and fed it through to the various divisions within our organisation to see how we can best make the information available to clients,’ says Brown.

It’s a simple yet potent formula: gather client data, create a centralised resource and share it across the organisation. The same approach guides how JSE Client Services interacts with clients through its customer-relationship management (CRM) system.

Brown says that this integrated approach is especially helpful when it comes to the more complex requests that the JSE Client Services service centre deals with. ‘Ours is not a traditional contact centre that offers only front-line support,’ she says.

‘We provide first- and second-level support, guiding clients through the intricacies of how their business interfaces with our platforms. In a sense, we become an extension of those businesses.’

To achieve this level of service, the JSE cannot afford to have a silo structure that so many organisations have. ‘As a customer, your engagement with a silo’ed organisation will be fragmented and inconsistent. This is true for organisations large or small: you’ll split into departments and the client experience will be different – sometimes vastly different – from one to another.’

It’s an all-too-familiar problem, and one that the JSE is working to avoid as it rolls out the CRM. ‘We’re creating a single view of the client, with their correct contact details and a clear picture of what they’re asking us,’ says Brown. ‘If someone in our Capital Markets team, for example, is going out to see a client, they’ll have a clear view of the engagement that particular client has had with us, and they are then able to respond appropriately to all of the client’s needs.’

By centralising its client information, the JSE is using data to enhance its client services. ‘The information is managed centrally, and audited and updated regularly,’ says Brown. ‘What’s more, in line with POPI and GDPR regulations, certain private information will be kept exactly that: private.’

This technology is not unique to the JSE but, as Brown points out, what is unique is how the exchange is applying it for its specific clients.

‘For us, it’s about using the technology to best communicate with them,’ she says. ‘We’re also exploring a multichannel option to see what would best serve our clients’ needs. Ultimately, it’s about speed of response and keeping clients informed. It’s about listening to our clients and putting them at the centre of what we do.’

While technology is an important enabler, it would not be effective without a highly skilled team with a client-centric attitude using it. ‘Our true differentiator is our people,’ says Brown. ‘I’m very fortunate that I have a great team working with me and striving to delight our clients.’

Brown hopes the data that flows into and out of JSE Client Services will lead to improved client services. ‘We want to be the best of the best and we want to provide excellent service in every engagement and every interaction,’ she says. ‘We welcome feedback from our clients, because ultimately we want to ensure we’re adding value to their businesses.’

By Mark van Dijk
Images: Gallo/Getty Images