RBC transforms its intranet portal team into a customer-facing self-service task force

Most companies could get by maintaining their intranet portal with some homebrew software, but the Royal Bank of Canada felt it needed a bit more to cater to its 80,000 employees around the globe, who collectively drive 10 million page views per month.

The homegrown solution had served its purposes, but in 2012 the bank recognized that it was lacking some of the key features available elsewhere, says Patrick Chiu, director of digital content and front-end development in web development at RBC. “The system was very freaky and totally not extensible.”

To find a new solution from software vendors catering to enterprises managing web content, it conducted a 12-month RFP, closely examining features and eventually landing on OpenText Web Content Manager (WCM), which was then known as HP Autonomy.

It wasn’t until 2017 that the bank rolled out OpenText WCM globally, but now it’s discovering the product is good for more than just serving up company information to its own employees. Business managers are extending the product and building self-service tools used key some key client groups. The effort has helped drive double-digit growth in digital clients and digital transactions annually for several consecutive years.

The project has earned RBC a nomination in the Large Private Sector Business Transformation category at ITWC’s Digital Transformation Awards, being held Aug. 14  in Toronto.

After surviving three generations of web content management systems at RBC, Chiu now has the job of finding new ways to deploy OpenText WCM to different departments at RBC. Rather than going through the process of finding a new solution all over again, RBC recognized it’d be more productive to extend OpenText.

“What really impressed me was the ability to do dynamic queries,” he says. “We can render the data on different degrees of personalization.”

The ability of line of business managers to create, update, and remove content from their web properties without IT support also took off the pressure to support the number of different pages available to employees. To mitigate risks of having non-technical users updating content, OpenText WCM allows for permissions to be set on users. There’s also a “Workflow” feature that creates version control and an audit trail that attributes changes to users and shows when they were made to administrators.

To push adoption of the new tool, RBC assigned a team for digital web development and a support group for users who were going through the transition. The web team designed web experiences for the different business segments and worked to integrate WCM with other technologies they used.

The training push involved both a bottom-up and a top-down approach, Chiu says. “You need a good penetration strategy to go through so many layers of people,” he says. “There were people in Asia using a different CMS, and another one in Australia as well.”

Migration began two and a half users ago, and has now reached 93 per cent of all employees required, with plans to be complete by the end of the year.

So far, WCM has been used to create internal tools for customer-facing employees, such as the ability to consolidate credit from other banks into an RBC credit card. There’s also external-facing tools, such as one for direct investing, allowing investors to peruse their options in different markets.

From there, Chiu hopes that the entire company will consider WCM before adopting a new tool for solving a business problem. “That’s something I really want to push,” he says. His department is even prepared to host others on RBC’s Amazon Web Services space.

You could say it’s become an intranet portal that people actually use, but it’s become so much more.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Brian Jackson
Brian Jacksonhttp://www.itbusiness.ca
Editorial director of IT World Canada. Covering technology as it applies to business users. Multiple COPA award winner and now judge. Paddles a canoe as much as possible.

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