Published in General

Alt and Neu – Everything Old is New Again


I am on my way to the annual ABA Regulatory Conference in Chicago from June 10th through 12th.  I’m looking forward to seeing my former banking colleagues—even the examiners & regulators—but  I am  most excited about announcing the unveiling of a new product we have been developing called CrowsNest™.

CrowsNest™ is a new approach for monitoring compliance with consumer protection regulations from both the behavioral and customer experience perspectives. Plus, it’s the perfect combination of leveraging areas of our business where we can share our experience and expertise: financial services, mystery shopping and  regulatory compliance.  CrowsNest will provide you with your customer’s perspective, complimenting existing compliance management systems!

Here’s where the old and new comes into play. The story behind how CrowsNest evolved is quite unique and I figure there’s no better time to share it than as we are launching it. A few years ago, one of our account managers received a request from an existing banking customer who needed to step up their branch-level compliance monitoring due to new legislation regulating banking disclosures as they relate to direct deposits, credit cards and overdraft fees. New regulations were dictating that consumers needed to receive timely, understandable and complete terms and conditions or institutions could face significant fines. While the bank had the process in place to meet the new regulations, how could they know for sure that they were really effective and that customers not only received the information but understood it too? You guessed it—extend our network of mystery shoppers to secretly monitor these transactions. Now a trained Maritz shopper visits all client retail branches in the US and requests additional information. They then answer a series of questions about their visit and can even upload scanned pictures of the information they receive. And, to further replicate a true customer scenario, we use both existing client customers as well as non-customers as shoppers.

A lot of what is in the industry around compliance monitoring solutions is at a high level–making sure that programs are in place. CrowsNest is monitoring those programs in action at the front-line, the most basic level, by providing an assessment of a financial institution’s regulatory compliance from the customer’s perspective. The monitoring service allows an institution to independently determine how well employees are following internal compliance guidelines while providing a better understanding of how their customers are responding to these guidelines in practice.

It’s good to know that a strong relationship with our client was the precursor to CrowsNest. Isn’t that how it should be?

And, this is a great way to demonstrate taking existing approaches and leveraging our expertise to create new approaches to solve evolving challenges.

If you’re in Chicago for the conference, please stop by and visit us at the Maritz Research booth at The Hyatt Regency to catch up and learn more about this new approach

Looking forward to seeing you there!