Creating global products is one of the keys to BBVA’s transformation and represents one of its main challenges to becoming a digital company. The goal is to develop solutions that incorporate the Group’s best practices and whose components can be reused. In doing so, the bank is more efficient, can go to market more quickly, and creates a single user experience across the bank’s operating countries.
“With this approach, instead of having the world’s best mobile banking app in Spain and the best design in Turkey, we can offer customers this world’s best app in every country, wherever we have customers,” explains Gonzalo Rodríguez, BBVA’s Global Head of Retail Solutions, who recently brought together the key contributors driving the bank’s transformation for a meeting in Madrid. In this kick-off meeting, participants from across BBVA’s footprint shared best practices, sought to solve unresolved challenges to the new approach to creating solutions, and defined the regional roadmaps to ensure BBVA´s continues to lead the way in product and service excellence.
This change in approach - the shift to global creation - is significant because it entails a change to work dynamics, collaboration between transnational teams, the use of new technology platforms, and all the while factoring in data and design to each and every development.
Derek White, BBVA's Global Head of Client Solutions, boils these challenges down to technology and people. “The infrastructure and the architecture that allows us to to create designs, algorithms, software, and APIs has to be built,” White said, discussing the technical challenges. “People have to be able to work collaboratively and have tools available that enable them to act like a true community, sharing best practices and designs,” White added.
One of the main components of this strategy involves taking the best from each market. “The best from the United States with Open Market for customer acquisition, the best from Colombia with its DIY (self-service) functionality, or functionality like Spain’s Bconomy, or Turkey’s first-rate design. By taking the best from each of our regions we will create much more robust global solutions for the whole Group,” Rodríguez maintains. He added that he firmly believes that both the bank and its customers benefit from this new way of working, which he summarizes in three points:
- Design things once, using the best features and the learning from each of the bank's operating countries.
- Reuse components across regions in order to deliver more quickly and efficiently, because a development is built in one place and can be used in another, instead of starting at zero in each country.
- Always offer the latest functionality and provide the best user experience to everyone, giving all of our customers the ability to easily sign up for our products, make better decisions or simply reduce their money-related stress.
And when it comes to delivering on this ambition, the development of global products is already becoming a reality. The best example of this strategy is the new app developed in Mexico on the global mobile platform, which subsequently allowed Uruguay to develop its first banking application in a matter of months, thanks to the practice of reusing components. Peru and Argentina will also be able to rebuild and improve their apps this year thanks to the global platform.
BBVA is moving step by step, exchanging functionality – and lessons learned – across its different markets in a move towards excellence and a uniform product offering that brings the age of opportunity to all of its customers, regardless of country.
“We’re going to allow people to interact with their money, taking the best from Turkey, Colombia, Mexico, Peru, the United States and bringing it all together in one global solution, giving the best of everyone to everybody. It is truly exciting!” concludes White.