Leading Banks and Financial Services Firms Around the Globe Are Using Microsoft Technology to Help Change Their Customers’ Experiences

ORLANDO, Fla. — Nov. 15, 2005 — On the one-year anniversary of Microsoft Corp.’s experience Banking initiative, banks and financial services firms across the globe are getting on board.

Leading banks and financial services firms are taking steps to differentiate themselves and transform their customer, employee and operations experiences by implementing innovative solutions based on Microsoft® technology and partner solutions, Microsoft announced today at the Bank Administration Institute (BAI) Retail Delivery Conference & Expo.

Microsoft’s experience Banking is fueling successes across several fronts:

Continued adoption of Microsoft technologies by leading banks and financial services firms around the globe, including Banco Azteca, Banco Nossa Caixa, Barclays Bank, BMO Financial Group, CheckFree Corp., Farm Credit Services of America, GMAC Commercial Mortgage, Monte dei Paschi di Siena, Standard Chartered Bank, Wachovia Corp. and Woodforest National Bank

Recent product launches, including Microsoft SQL Server™ 2005, Microsoft Visual Studio® 2005 and upcoming Microsoft BizTalk® Server 2006 — which introduce a host of new enterprise-ready features for banks’ and other financial services firms’ back offices — as well as upcoming service solutions such as Microsoft “Motion” and the Branch Office Infrastructure Solution (BOIS)

Additional support from leading banking industry partners, including Accenture, Advanced Financial Solutions Inc. — a Metavante. company, Baker Hill, Getronics, Harland and Intervoice, and continued support of existing bank industry partners

“On the one-year anniversary of launching Microsoft’s experience Banking initiative, we are thrilled with the benefits banks and other financial services firms are realizing today through Microsoft-based technology and our partner solutions,” said Bill Harnett, general manager of strategy and solutions for the Financial Services Group at Microsoft. “Experience Banking is real, and it provides proven solutions, tools and expertise to help transform the banking experience, as demonstrated by the customer success throughout the year.”

Continued Bank Support for Microsoft Technologies

Leading banks and financial services firms across the globe continue to adopt Microsoft technologies and are experiencing significant benefits that include lower total cost of ownership, increased productivity, faster time to market, more streamlined operations and enhanced customer service.

“Wachovia recently chose the Microsoft platform for our online banking upgrade,” said Lawrence Baxter, head of Wachovia’s eCommerce division. “The new platform will further enhance the excellence that Wachovia customers have come to expect through our online channel and will help differentiate our services in a highly competitive market.”

Examples of customers that are transforming their customer, employee and operations experiences by using Microsoft technologies include the following:

  • Banco Azteca, the newest and fastest-growing bank in Mexico, serves approximately 5 million customers through more than 1,000 branches across the country. It needed to manage large numbers of small accounts while keeping transaction costs low through efficiencies in its core systems. To do this, a critical component of banking services was migrated to a 64-bit Microsoft Windows Server™ 2003 platform. The benefits include a performance time of up to 70 times faster, better customer service and a scalable solution for a growing business.

  • Banco Nossa Caixa, one of the top 10 banks in Brazil, wanted to make the most of technology to support its daily operations and improve productivity and the quality of decision-making. Working with Microsoft Consulting Services, Banco Nossa Caixa used Microsoft SQL Server 2000 to consolidate mainframe data and Microsoft Office Professional Enterprise Edition 2003 to provide a familiar interface for employees to perform data analysis. The resulting benefits are increased data access from only a few executives to 2,000 employees, improved quality of information by 20 percent to 30 percent, and improved organizational efficiency.

  • Barclays Bank, the world’s ninth-largest bank, promised its shareholders IT cost reductions of ₤1 billion (U.S. $1.8 billion). The company sought a technology solution that streamlined business processes and improved communication without compromising large quantities of highly sensitive information. Barclays Bank chose to standardize its desktops with the help of EDS and HP, using Microsoft software and by adopting the Microsoft Office System. The resulting benefit is seamless integration with back-end enterprise servers so employees can quickly respond to customer requests. Improved collaboration on data and documents will also help speed up business decisions.

  • BMO Financial Group, one of the largest financial services companies in North America, needed a better way to organize and share information with its 33,000 employees. BMO deployed a new employee portal with Microsoft Office SharePoint® Portal Server 2003. Customized information is now targeted to frontline staff according to job role. Employees see a simpler interface with easy navigation and single-click access to key Web-based information and applications they need from the portal’s home page. Employee productivity is up by 23 percent.

  • CheckFree, based in Atlanta, is a leader in financial electronic commerce, including electronic billing and payment, financial services software, and outsourced investment services. CheckFree selected the Microsoft platform for CheckFree Investment Services’ next-generation enhanced portfolio lifecycle platform to potentially decrease costs while meeting its high-volume needs and stringent quality demands. From benchmark testing, significant benefits of using the Microsoft platform included a 24 percent lower total cost of ownership, 14 percent faster transaction rates and faster potential time to market.

  • Farm Credit Services of America serves the agricultural credit and financial needs of farmers and ranchers in Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming. To address a variety of disparate customer-related systems that made it impossible to gain a single view of customers, the company, with the help of Quilogy, replaced its point-to-point connections with Pinwheel. Pinwheel is a customer integration solution based on the Microsoft .NET Framework and Microsoft BizTalk Server 2004 Enterprise Edition. Information is now processed through Pinwheel, stored in a central “customer truth center” and published back to the customer-related systems. Significant benefits of Pinwheel include an increased loan volume, a 70 percent boost in productivity and a 75 percent reduction in system integration time.

  • GMAC Commercial Mortgage is a leading financial services provider for the global commercial real estate industry. It needed to track more than a thousand business controls and manage several times as many documents for Sarbanes-Oxley Act compliance. GMACCM built its solution using the Microsoft Visual Studio .NET 2003 development system, which runs on the Microsoft .NET Framework. GMACCM saved 70 percent by developing its own solution. The rich functionality helped the company to reduce the cost of Sarbanes-Oxley compliance by 50 percent.

  • Monti Di Paschi di Sienna, founded in 1472, is the oldest bank in the world. With more than 2,000 branches and 4 million customers, the bank has become one of the most important banking groups in Italy. The group’s IT department, Consorzio Operative Gruppo MPS, chose an intranet solution based on Microsoft Office SharePoint Portal Server 2003 and other core parts of Microsoft Windows Server System™. Benefits include a new intranet portal that handles 1 million requests each day with up to 40 users per second accessing the system, and easier groupwide collaboration due to information and ideas being exchanged in real time.

  • Standard Chartered Bank has more than 30,000 employees in more than 500 locations in more than 50 countries through the Asia Pacific region, South Asia, the Middle East, Africa, the United Kingdom and the Americas. Standard Chartered Bank wanted an instant messaging solution to enable real-time communication and collaboration. It adopted the Parlano MindAlign enterprise messaging application running on Microsoft Windows Server System. The company is now experiencing revenue boosts of 5 percent, increases in productivity up to 500 percent, total-cost-of-ownership reductions and greater agility to respond to market opportunities.

  • Wachovia is one of the largest providers of financial services to retail, brokerage and corporate customers, with banking operations from Connecticut to Florida to Texas, and retail brokerage operations nationwide. Wachovia chose the Microsoft platform for a major overhaul of its online banking platform. The new platform will bring customers an improved level of convenience, usability and safety, while providing simpler and swifter navigation and seamless integration of various money management functions.

  • Woodforest National Bank, one of the top-earning banks in the U.S., developed a multilingual telephone banking system using Microsoft Speech Server 2004 R2. Call times are now expected to be reduced by 50 percent. Live operator support has been reduced by up to 70 percent.

Next Evolution of Microsoft’s Application Platform

Microsoft recently announced three new product releases that provide key benefits for enterprise customers, including banks and financial services firms. The products include SQL Server 2005, Visual Studio 2005 and the upcoming release of BizTalk Server 2006. The advancement of the developer tools and server software enables businesses to enhance the connection between their people, business processes and information, and give customers the ability to make decisions rapidly. More information can be found at

http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2005/nov05/11-07rockthelaunchumbrellapr.mspx.

Microsoft “Motion”

Microsoft today announced the availability of a new services offering, code-named “Motion.” “Motion” is a tool to help financial institutions quickly and easily map their core business capabilities and requirements into a services-oriented architecture. More information about “Motion” is available by sending e-mail to motion@microsoft.com.

Branch Office Infrastructure Solution

The BOIS provides conceptual information to help facilitate the definition and deployment of a streamlined branch office infrastructure solution that provides a comprehensive set of core IT infrastructure services. The BOIS helps banks facilitate an infrastructure based on the Microsoft Windows Server 2003 operating system. The deliverables include prescriptive guidelines for implementing a complete, lab-validated, single-server solution for the branch office using automated deployment tools. The automation tools are part of this offer and are configurable for individual branch office deployments. Additional information is available at http://www.microsoft.com/technet/itsolutions/branch/default.mspx.

Continued Partner Support for Microsoft’s Technologies

Another demonstration of support for Microsoft experience Banking is the commitment of more than a dozen leading banking industry partners to delivering solutions and services that use Microsoft technologies. These valued partners are among the most influential solution providers in the banking industry and include Accenture, Advanced Financial Solutions, ARGO Data Systems, Baker Hill, Corillian, Diebold, Fincentric Corp., Getronics, Harland Financial Solutions, Jack Henry, Intel Corporation, Intervoice and Unisys Corp.

Experience Banking in Action

Microsoft is demonstrating experience Banking at this year’s BAI Retail Delivery Conference & Expo. A number of Microsoft technologies and industry partner solutions will be featured in Microsoft’s booth No.1171. More information is available at http://www.microsoft.com/industry/financialservices/bai2005.mspx. In addition, Microsoft’s vision of the future of banking will be shown in a new, two-minute video that showcases technology concepts that have the potential to change the way people bank.

About Microsoft Experience Banking

Experience Banking is a Microsoft initiative that helps banks change the customer, employee and operations experience so they can achieve increased market share and profitability. The initiative was launched with the support of leading software, hardware and systems integration partners delivering solutions based on the Microsoft platform. Experience Banking is designed to help banks differentiate their brand and achieve a competitive advantage with increased employee satisfaction and productivity, faster response to changing market needs, and reduced total cost of ownership.

More information can be found online at http://www.microsoft.com/experiencebanking.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Microsoft, Visual Studio, BizTalk, Windows Server, SharePoint and Windows Server System are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass on Microsoft’s corporate information pages. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may since have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/contactpr.mspx.

Related Posts