The pandemic presented a host of new opportunities for the financial services industry, just like many other sectors across the globe. Faced with the new challenges of lockdowns and travel restrictions, brands in the financial services space needed to find a way of empowering their teams to continue working effectively, wherever they were.
The implementation of UC solutions delivered through the cloud became a table stakes investment for many organisations. UCaaS and collaboration tools are now some of the essential resources in any company, ensuring employees can continue to thrive wherever the changing landscape might take them. Fortunately, there are plenty of excellent vendors on-hand to help teams transition into the new age of work.
When UniCredit, a pan-European commercial bank with investing and corporate banking options, needed to evolve during the pandemic, Cisco Webex emerged as the ultimate tool for innovation.
Let’s look at how Cisco Webex helped UniCredit to survive the pandemic.
Addressing the Sudden Demand for Remote Work
UniCredit, a leading pan-European commercial bank offering a range of corporate and investment banking options, was already amid a crucial digital transformation initiative in 2019 before the pandemic began. Despite this, like many companies, the UniCredit brand felt the strain of having to suddenly accelerate into a new age of work much faster than expected.
When the pandemic started prompting lockdowns and travel restrictions in 2020, UniCredit decided it needed a scalable, flexible solution to help it thrive. Before the pandemic, face-to-face meetings with clients had been a core part of how the business operated. When the pandemic hit, the team needed a way to support employees in a distributed workforce and ensure a consistent level of excellent customer service.
With financial service expertise and products offered in 13 core markets across Europe and 16 countries worldwide, the team needed a scalable and secure solution. Even with the digital transformation journey already in full swing for the brand, some countries still needed extra help moving into the unified communication and collaboration pipeline.
Cisco Webex to The Rescue
During the pandemic, UniCredit was one of many banking and financial services companies to immediately shift the workforce into the cloud when the virus began to spread. By February 21st, 2020, all the 60,000 employees working in Italy were already working remotely.
Unfortunately, this placed significant strain on the VPN solution UniCredit was already using to help empower its team. On February 20th, only around 4,000 people were working remotely. By 21st, the number had increased by about 15 times. The company needed a fully operational remote work solution, offering sensational UCaaS functionality and working independently from the VPN platform to keep UniCredit running smoothly.
Though the UniCredit team only had a matter of days to get its new solution ironed out, it already knew which company it would be working with. Cisco and the Webex ecosystem made perfect sense as the go-to service for the UniCredit team. The business was already using the Cisco Telepresence platform, and Webex’s cloud-based solution was perfectly suited to the team’s remote working requirements.
According to UniCredit, the business wanted to offer its teams a solution that was easy to use and robust, offering high-quality video and voice calling. Cisco Webex offered these benefits, and it was already fully compliant with all banking regulations regarding privacy and cybersecurity. The system could also work across various devices, which was a crucial factor.
A Flexible and Scalable Cloud Solution
Because, like many companies, UniCredit had no idea how long its company would be stuck in restrictions and out of the office, they felt it was essential to implement a highly flexible and scalable solution they could manage remotely. The Webex service from Cisco allowed UniCredit to secure 7000 emergency licenses immediately so that they could begin onboarding their team.
Familiarity with the Cisco Telepresence ecosystem, combined with the ease of use of the Webex platform, were a significant help, according to UniCredit, ensuring their IT team could stay ahead of the crisis. What’s more, Cisco offers a range of easy-to-understand tutorial videos and online content to help new users discover Webex.
These reference materials offered insights into using important tools to send invitations, join a meeting, or leverage various voice, video, chat, and file-sharing features. Most users started leveraging the solution with minimal assistance, which meant the IT team could focus on other ways to keep UniCredit operational.
UniCredit believes Cisco and Webex delivered the people and technology required to access a sustainable, functional, and scalable response to an unpredictable situation. With up to 1,000 people now connecting via Webex at one time, the company has been able to bring conferences to people’s homes, which ensures they can maintain an open dialogue with colleagues and clients alike.
Though the Cisco Webex implementation was initially intended to be a temporary solution for navigating the lockdown, it became a useful and critical additional tool for enhancing remote work for colleagues on an ongoing basis in external and internal interactions.
Now, UniCredit wealth managers use Webex to offer personal consultations to clients, and investment bankers use the same technology for interactions with clients regularly. What’s more, UniCredit’s team has adapted to the new ways of working at an incredible pace, with more than 295,000 meetings scheduled in one year alone.
The Perfect Fit at a Challenging Time
Countless companies have had to shift to a different workplace style in the last couple of years. UniCredit was one of the few financial services companies able to make this transition seamlessly, thanks to the choice of the right technology provider.
The company was able to scale Webex access in record time and rely on the technology today to enhance employee collaboration and customer experience.