Wealth Management CRM enables superior customer service

“We had to upgrade our system, rebuild and deliver 5 years of development in a 12 month timeframe. No mean feat, and Incremental delivered for us.”

Shani Weston, CRM Administration Manager, Rathbones

Rathbone Brothers Plc, through its subsidiaries, is one of the UK’s leading providers of wealth and investment management services for private clients, charities and professional advisers.

With a heritage dating back to 1742, 14 offices across the UK and Jersey, over 39,000 clients, Rathbones’ success and reputation has been built on the simple commitment to superior client service as well as state-of-the-art administrative systems.

Far more than just an upgrade

Rathbones had historically spent significant time and effort getting their CRM system, built on Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 with a Wealth Management bolt-on, to the point where it provided their 450 users (investment fund managers and support teams) with all the information they needed. Rathbones was however reliant on a niche wealth management product and CRM 4.0 was leaving Microsoft general support. This change in support status was the catalyst for a major rethink.

Rathbones had to upgrade their CRM solution, but also had the opportunity to remove the bolt-on and leverage more of the new, core features of the updated Microsoft Dynamics CRM platform. Shani Weston, CRM Administration Manager, Rathbones explained, “We met with Incremental and felt they had the upgrade and technical experience we needed. Just as important for us was approach and style. We wanted to work collaboratively and it was apparent from the outset this was the way they worked. The people involved from the beginning were extremely credible and we built a good relationship from the start.”

"We met with Incremental and felt they had the upgrade and technical experience we needed."

A consolidated CRM solution

Incremental was engaged to deliver an on-premise Microsoft CRM 2013 wealth management solution for Rathbones, achieving like-for-like functionality whilst removing their legacy wealth management bolt-on. This entailed a double upgrade from Microsoft CRM 4.0 to 2011, and then to 2013. It was a highly complex project.

Within Rathbones the existing CRM solution was managing communication between the investment managers and their customers, including telephone calls, letters, appointments, emails and contact details for their customers. All activity had to be maintained in the new system and delivered in a short timeframe, despite the significant bespoke work undertaken with the previous version. With a number of old record types being retired, some of the data being migrated had to fit new record types. The data model was complex, requiring data migration to be carefully planned and sequenced.

Incremental worked closely with Rathbones together throughout the project. Early diagnostics, user workshops and a clear project management system to control development and implementation – through functional requirement documents and higher level design documents – ensured the development was to a high standard. Shani Wilson from Rathbones said “We initially spent a considerable time in workshops with Incremental sharing ideas and opinions and they acknowledged and welcomed our inhouse experience. The collaboration was very effective.”

A key success of the project was the development of the customer file preview within Microsoft Dynamics CRM. This allows investment managers to see all associated activities for a customer when working on case records such as phone calls, letters and emails. “It was a complex but highly valuable development in the project,” explained Weston.

"We were very ambitious in how long it would take us as we were rebuilding many years of development into a very short period of time. With a great deal of testing and Go-Live support from Incremental, everything went very smoothly."

Ability to benefit from future features and full support guaranteed

  • Complex solution delivered – Incremental delivered a complex solution in an ambitious timeframe. Rathbones continues to have full support from Microsoft and now has the ability to make use of new features in the future when released.
  • Collaborative working – Shani Weston from Rathbones said, “This was important for us. We have the knowledge and understanding of what our system has to do, and we know our users. Incremental has the technical know-how, so together we’ll get the best result for our users. It’s about mutual respect.”
  • High user adoption – All the custom developments that were essential and business critical for Rathbones’ investment managers needed were incorporated, like-for-like or enhanced. This ensured high user adoption.

“We had to upgrade because it’s critical we have full support from Microsoft, and we want to use new features in the future.”

A future-proof roadmap

Rathbones is now in a solid position to evolve their platform and provide continual improvements to their users. They will be expanding CRM to the rest of the business, and are beginning to use it for their marketing activities.

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