Who We AreWhat We DoHow We Help­The ARBA Difference

We Help Financial Services Companies to Grow Through Digital Service Design & Customized Innovation.

ABOUT US

ARBA Is a Digital Service Design Consultancy That Serves Financial Services Companies.

ARBA is a digital service design consultancy that helps our clients to separate digital opportunities from hype, & discover digital advantage in dynamic business environment. We design solutions & manage delivery to ensure that our clients achieve their important goals & unlock their full digital potential.

Who We Are

Our Specialists Serve Our Clients with Determination & Dedication

The quality of our people is the foundation of our capabilities to serve our clients. We invest significant effort in identifying exceptional people, developing their skills, and producing an environment that nurtures their growth as innovators. It is only with the determination & dedication of our people that we can serve our clients.

Defined by Our People

Our specialists include information architects, software engineers, user experience designers, technologists, project managers, MBAs, & PhD. They have demonstrable aptitude to operate at both strategic and tactical levels. They join ARBA for the opportunity to apply their talents to tackle business challenges. Their diversity of discipline, background, age, gender, & interests enables our clients to receive holistic & pragmatic expertise.

Financial Services Industry Focus

We work with leading companies in the financial services sectors, including: retail banking, wealth management, capital markets business, bancassurance, life insurance, & general insurance. We have extensive expertise in financial services, but we also look beyond the industry & uncover relevant best practice in other industries.

What We Do

We Deliver Elegant & Pragmatic Digital Services For Financial Services Companies.

We help our clients to deliver digital services that work for their customers as well as their employees. We serve clients at different level & departments of their organization, in whatever capacity we can be most useful, whether as a trusted digital strategist to top management or as hands-on information architect for operational staffs. For every engagement, we assemble a team with the most suitable capabilities & experience.

Turn Challenges Into Opportunities

Evolving consumer behavior, emerging technologies, intensified competition, evolving regulatory landscape, shifting corporate strategies all create business challenges. No matter the challenge, we partner with our clients to put strategic recommendations into practice. Our work is founded on a thorough understanding of every client’s business context. We examine market, trends, & emerging best practices, in different industries, locally & globally. We focus on delivering elegant & pragmatic solutions that enable our clients to achieve their important goals.

Guided by Our Values

We continually uncover better ways to serve our clients, & aim to anticipate their future needs. We encourage our people to innovate, & apply new tools & methodologies. We aim to build a long-term relationship of trust with every client. We take our clients’ confidentiality seriously. We will only take on an engagement if we believe we can generate significant value for the client. We express the truth as we see it. Furthermore, we aim to be a good company in terms of our business practices, governance, social responsibility, and how we care for our people.

How We Help

We Put Ourselves In Our Clients’ Shoes & Unlock Their Full Digital Potential.

We share our clients' ambitions. We synthesize domain knowledge in financial services sectors with expertise in strategy, user experience design, technology, content & analytics, & proprietary innovation to help our clients thrive.

Digital Service Design: UX = CX + EX

We help our clients to deliver digital services with two interlinked focuses – customer experience (CX) & employee experience (EX). CX focuses on the design & implementation of digital interactions that happen across the customer journey, which include the interactions that take place as customers aware, research, buy & advocate (A-R-B-A). EX focuses on the behind-the-scenes activities that enable employees to support customers & deliver CX as planned, which include internal business process, systems & tools.

Digital Service Design provides a holistic framework for companies to actively design CX that engages their target customers, as well as EX that enables employees to support customers in meaningful ways – ultimately driving profits, cost savings, and competitive differentiation.

Customized Innovation

We work across different financial services sectors, including: retail banking, wealth management, capital markets business, bancassurance, life insurance, & general insurance. On every case, we look at the business from a chief executive’s perspective. We start by asking the right questions, & then dig deep into the organizational context & competitive landscape to design & deliver the right solutions. We don’t settle for off-the-shelf solutions, our recommendations are highly customized & innovative. We put ourselves in our clients’ shoes, align our recommendations with their goals, & collaborate to unlock the full digital potential of their business. This nurtures deep & enjoyable relationships.

Our Expertise

Strategy

Our strategists immerse themselves in the lives of our clients’ target customers & their relevant employees, uncovering their motivations & needs. Equipped with these insights, they shape actionable strategies with the power to enable employees to shift customer behavior.

Best Practices Analysis
Competitive Audit
CRM Strategy
Customer Journey Development
Content & Data Strategy
E-direct Marketing Strategy
Employee Journey Development
Focus Groups & Surveys
Integrated Campaign Strategy
Intranet Strategy

Knowledge Transfer Workshop
Marketing Messaging Development
Media & Channel Planning
Mobile Strategy
Persona Research & Development
Social Media Strategy
Stakeholder Interviews
Strategic Planning
Test Case Design
Viral Campaign Design

User Experience Design

Our UX specialists & digital design engineers collaborate to create elegant, pragmatic, & innovative solutions to tackle various business challenges that our clients face.

Digital Guideline Development
Expert Review
Information Architecture
Integrated Campaign Design
Interface Design
Log Data Analysis
Mobile App Design
Multivariate Testing
Observational Study

Persona Development
Platform Design
Prototyping
Responsive Website Design
Survey Design & Analysis
Usability Testing & Assessment
Use case Design
Visual Design
Wire-framing

Technology

Our technologists are vendor-neutral & platform agnostic, who pursue the best solutions for our clients’ business needs. Whether it is delivering a mobile application, a content-rich responsive website or an employee intranet, our solution is built for scale, performance, & best value for money.

Artificial Intelligence
API Integration
Cloud-based Infrastructure
Content Management Systems
Contingency Planning
Distributed CRM
E-Commerce
Intranet Development
Mobile App Development
Native App Development

Quality Testing
Rapid Prototyping
Responsive Site Development
Social CRM
System Architecture & Integration
System Performance Monitoring
Technical Infrastructure Audit
Technical Consulting
Technical Risk Management
Web Application Development

Content & Analytics

Our information architects & analysts ensure insight-driven content to be delivered to our clients’ target customers & employees. We analyze the interaction along the user journey, & make big data feel small by focusing on the small points that make the greatest impact.

Adaptive Content Management
Application Analytics
Campaign Analytics
Content Creation
Content Strategy
Content Migration Planning
Copy Editing
Customer Engagement Analysis
Customer Lifetime Value Analysis
Customer Segmentation & Profiling

Editorial Strategy
Illustration & Photography
KPIs Setting
Management Dashboard Design
Mobile Analytics
Sales Funnel Analysis
Social Analytics
Social Intelligence
Video & Audio Production
Web Analytics

Proprietary Innovation

Through internal research & development, our digital specialists have created various proprietary tools. These innovations become building blocks of the digital services that we customize for our clients. Here is a sample of the proprietary tools we have developed.

Artificial Intelligence Predictive Engine
Customer Engagement Dashboard
Data Visualization Engine
Distributed CRM Engine
Dynamic Product Catalog
Facebook Predictive Engine
Interactive Learning System

Mobile Publication System
Mobile Viral Engine
Responsive E-Newsletter
Responsive Corporate Intranet
Social CRM Engine
Social Gaming Platform
Virtual Tour Engine

The ARBA Difference

Decades of Digital Service Design Wisdom & Business Acumen.

At ARBA, our clients tap into decades of digital service design wisdom & experience combined with business acumen of financial services sectors, all brought together by people who are passionate in tackling business challenges with innovative & elegant solutions. The result is digital services that work in the competitive financial services industries.

Our User Experience Leadership

Our user experience (UX) team is led by Dr. Jeffrey Ho, who is a renowned expert in information architecture & UX. He brings decade of professional experience both in digital consultancy & academic sectors. His clients include AIA, Emirates, FWD, HSBC, The Peninsula Hotels Group, Prudential Corporation Asia, & The Mira Hotel.

Our Project Management Office

Our project management office (PMO) is led by Angela Chang & Eric Yuen, who have extensive experience & qualification in digital project management. Our project managers are certified in PMP, PRINCE2, ITIL, CBAP, & Scrum Master, with extensive experience serving clients in the financial services industries

Our Technology Task Force

Our system architects & software engineers are vendor-neutral & platform agnostic, who pursue the best solutions for our clients’ business needs. They are often considered as special task force who tackles technical challenges with innovative approach. They possess extensive competency & qualifications, from cloud computing, content management, database, e-commerce infrastructure, operating system, social computing, web & mobile programming.

Our Proprietary Innovation

Through internal research & development, our digital specialists have created various proprietary tools, from artificial intelligence predictive engine to social CRM. These innovations become building blocks of the digital services that we customize for our clients. They also reduce time- to-market of our solutions & enable our clients to achieve their goals more swiftly.

Our Financial Industry Domain Knowledge

Our strategists draw on deep experience across different financial services sectors (including: retail banking, wealth management, capital markets business, bancassurance, life insurance, & general insurance) to help clients to find innovative ways to streamline processes, reduce back-office costs, align IT, manage risks, capture economic benefits of building customer loyalty, and plan for evolving competitive and regulatory landscapes.

Our Independent Structure

We are not part of a global service conglomerate, although our people did gain extensive experience at such global organizations; this independence plus blue-chip experience enable us to effectively collaborate with our clients’ existing vendors & to be pragmatic about where our clients invest their budget.

OUR PEOPLE

The Quality of Our People Is the Foundation of Our Capabilities to Serve Our Clients.

Our people are our greatest asset. At the core of our efforts is a focus on cultivating & sustaining a diverse team environment, which is critical to meet the needs of our clients in the competitive financial services industry. They possess a diverse & complementary range of disciplines – strategy, user experience design, technology, project management. Their diversity of background, age, gender, & interests enable us to offer clients with holistic & pragmatic recommendations.

CLIENT SUCCESSES

Our Clients Tend to Be Business Leaders Who Are Not Satisfied With the Status Quo.

Forward-looking financial services companies are seeing a silver lining in today’s competitive market – they are swiftly capitalizing on the digital wave to re-establish themselves as the financial services provider of choice with customers as well as employees.

Forward-looking Business Leaders

Over the past few years, we have been fortunate to work with some of the leading financial services companies in Asia, including FWD, Generali Group, Hang Seng Bank, Manulife, Prudential Corporation Asia, Rabobank, & Zurich Insurance Group.

Shared Passion & Ambition

Our clients tend to be bold & ambitious business leaders. They share our passion for elegant & pragmatic digital services. They are not satisfied with the status quo. They think & act like owners of the business. As we take our clients’ confidentiality seriously, we have omitted the client names in the featured case studies, but the results are real.

Forward-looking Business Leaders

Over the past few years, we have been fortunate to work with some of the leading financial services companies in Asia, including BNP ParibasFWDGenerali GroupHang Seng BankJETCOManulifePrincipalPrudential Corporation AsiaRabobank & Zurich Insurance Group.

Shared Passion & Ambition

Our clients tend to be bold & ambitious business leaders. They share our passion for elegant & pragmatic digital services. They are not satisfied with the status quo. They think & act like owners of the business. As we take our clients’ confidentiality seriously, we have omitted the client names in the featured case studies, but the results are real.

Revitalized Portals with New Content Management Infrastructure & Process.

A global financial services company sought help in revamping its public & agency web portals, which no longer met the expectation & needs of the users.

The ARBA team formulated a content management strategy to facilitate the migration of massive content to a new technical infrastructure, & streamlining of the underlying processes. In parallel, the team worked closely with client managers to ensure that the strategy was actionable, by examining the underlying process, resources & constraints to execute the strategy. As the portals served multiple stakeholders with diverse needs, there were complex organizational & technical factors that needed to take into account. User experience specialists & software engineers were mobilized to execute the digital strategy, and the portals were revamped successfully within an aggressive timeline.

Productivity of sales agents was enhanced, & their satisfaction about the portal was increased due to streamlined workflow & responsive user experience. The content management process for the public portal was also streamlined to enable client managers to responsively launch online marketing initiatives.

Enabled Brokers to Drive Sales of Financial Products with Mobile Sales Tool.

A global insurance group sought help in enabling brokers to engage their customers & drive sales of several hundred investment funds. Investment research involved both science & art; there were many different approaches to identify investment products that fit customers’ personal preference. For instance, some customers focus on long-term investment return, whereas some customers prefer certain asset class.

To tackle the challenge, a data visualization technique of ‘dynamic chess-board’ was designed for the development of an elegant & pragmatic mobile app. The mobile sales tool enabled brokers to easily navigate through hundreds of investment funds & customize their sales approach that fit their customers’ investment preference.

The mobile app was well received & uplifted the sales performance of the brokers. Driven by the brokers’ feedback & improved sales performance, the mobile app was further enhanced to incorporate insurance products in addition to investment funds. It enabled brokers to more easily cross-sell insurance products. Portfolio management features were also added to help brokers to manage customer relationship more effectively.

Made Sense of Metrics through Integrated CRM & Management Dashboard.

A global investment bank looked for a solution that could help make sense of massive sets of metrics gathered from multiple online consumer touchpoints (i.e. email newsletter, websites, mobile apps, & social media), & uncover areas for improvements.

The ARBA team delivered a customized CRM (Customer Relationship Management) solution comprised of eDM (electronic Direct Marketing) features & a ‘Management Dashboard’. Similar to a car’s dashboard to guide its driver, the ‘management dashboard’ enabled senior management to easily obtain a clear & holistic view of the performance of different touchpoints. Furthermore, elegantly designed data visualization were incorporated into the dashboard to enable line managers to drill deeper into specific set of metric that they felt interested in.

The solution captured interaction data of online consumers & uncovered actionable insights (e.g. engagement level of consumers at a particular touchpoint). These insights were utilized for the improvement of product development & strategic marketing initiatives (e.g. underwriting of a new product that fitted customers’ latest interest; product awareness campaign that appealed to an underserved segment of prospects).

Boosted Online Trading of Derivatives with Holistic Suite of Digital Services.

A global investment bank’s derivatives business looked for a way to penetrate multiple customer segments in a systematic manner. These target segments (ranging from housewives to newly graduated students) had diverse characteristics & different investment preference in selecting financial products.

The ARBA team conducted stakeholder interviews with different derivatives specialists, from traders to marketers, to obtain a timely view of the market dynamics. Competitive analysis was conducted to provide a comprehensive understanding of how other financial firms were competing in the target segments. We also designed & executed a qualitative consumer research to uncover insights about these target segments.

By distilling the findings & collaborating closely with client managers, we formulated a comprehensive Omni-Channel Strategy. A set of personas were crafted to guide the design & development of different consumer touchpoints (e.g. e-newsletter, websites, mobile apps, & direct marketing campaign). We also formulated marketing guideline with multiple sets of promotional messaging targeting different segments. We revamped public websites in multiple countries & developed multiple mobile apps to tackle different segments. Furthermore, mobiles sales tool was created to facilitate line managers to effectively engage customers at brokerage firms & marketing events. With the holistic suite of digital services that targeted external customers as well as internal employees, the client’s brand awareness & online trading volume were enhanced.

Every Sales Agent Had Her Own Personal Assistant through AI-Enabled Mobile App.

A leading insurance company looked for an innovative way to boost performance & pipeline management of the sales agents. Traditional CRM solutions, such as salesforces.com, did not fit their preference.

Some agents expressed keen interest to have their own personal assistant who could help them to nurture & strengthen customer relationship; such as conducting background research of prospects, reminding about special occasions that are relevant to their customers (e.g. birthday, premium due-date, post-incident visit, social events that may be of customers’ interest), & identifying suitable café for prospect meetings etc. With several thousand agents working in the field, assigning a personal assistant for each agent was challenging.

The ARBA team created an elegant mobile app, integrated with an innovative artificial intelligence (AI) predictive engine, to fulfill the agents’ needs. By examining various online behavior & social profiles of the prospects or customers (e.g. Facebook & LinkedIn profiles), the AI-enabled mobile personal assistant app could intelligently offer the agents with recommendations in approaching prospects. The app also enhanced productivity of the agents with contact management, proactive reminders, & intelligent notifications.

Valuable customer intelligence was also accumulated as the usage of the app became natural part of the agents’ daily work life. It enabled agents to effectively up-sell financial products, & maximized customer lifetime value. Besides boosting the sales performance & customer relationship, the app’s underlying CRM model, which was distributed & socially-centric, played an important role in strengthening the client’s customer advocacy. AI won’t end the world as some may be afraid of, but it certainly might take away the jobs of personal assistant.

Modernized Online & Mobile Banking to Acquire Multi-Screen Consumers.

A leading retail bank sought help in acquiring new customers, who are keen to connect with banks on screens of all types & sizes. These ‘multi-screen’ consumers represented a huge new opportunity, but only if the client’s digital banking presence could meet their expectation & needs.

The ARBA team conducted interview with key client stakeholders to identify their vision of online & mobile banking. Multiple types of user experience assessment on the client’s online & mobile banking sites were conducted (i.e. expert review, online open card sorting, & weblog analysis) to identify areas for improvement. Competitive analysis was also conducted to gain a timely understanding of how other banks were competing. Furthermore, we conducted global best practice analysis to examine how financial services companies successfully utilized digital services to engage ‘multi-screen’ consumers & achieve various goals, from driving online transaction, reducing operating expense, to strengthening customer loyalty. How these best practices could be localized for our client was also devised.

We then formulated a comprehensive online & mobile banking strategy, with specific recommendations for improvements of the sites’ information architecture, digital guideline for imagery content & copywriting style, as well as digital development framework for revamp of various online banking services. These deliverables enabled our client to swiftly steer towards its online & mobile banking vision.

Strengthened Sense of Community & Employees Collaboration with Regional Intranet.

A global insurance company was expanding rapidly across Asia Pacific & looked for help in achieving various business goals – fostering employee communications, improving operational efficiency, promoting collaboration among employees, & strengthening sense of community among employees.

The ARBA team adopted several strategic principles to design a regional intranet for the client – leveraging global intranet best practice, putting employees as focal point of user experience (UX) design, executing with agile approach to sustain success, & enabling the intranet to grow over time. A development roadmap was formulated to fit the regional expansion plan of the client. We collaborated closely with client IT team to conduct technical feasibility study & recommended content management infrastructure that met client’s needs & constraints. An elegant mobile-centric ‘card-based’ approach was adopted for the UX design.

The regional intranet was initially launched in one country, & was well received by employees. Additional functionalities were further prioritized based on employees’ online interaction with the internet. Multiple phases of functionalities were then rolled out; whereas certain functionalities with poor response were taken out in order to streamline the UX. ARBA project management team collaborated closely with client stakeholders in multiple countries, & applied the Agile Development Methodology to ensure the regional intranet was delivered effectively across Asia Pacific.

Acquired New Talents with Socially Connected Mobile Recruitment App.

A leading insurance company looked for solution to help its recruiters to attract new talents to join their sales teams. The financial services industries are highly competitive in acquiring & retaining sales talents; the client found it ineffective to rely on traditional human resources methods to recruit young talents.

The ARBA team collaborated closely with client management & identified four key challenges the recruiters were facing: recruitment is a process & took more than a presentation meeting; different target candidates had different degrees of receptiveness; many young candidates knew well about the job market & might not be attracted easily; selling might play a higher importance than recruiting as time is scare for the recruiters who were also sales managers. We conducted further interviews & found that three conditions must be met for candidates to consider a career at the client’s company: credible & personalized reason that provided motivation; resources, relationships & environment that provided opportunity; & skills, confidence & knowledge that provided ability.

Three strategic principles were formulated by ARBA team to tackle the four key challenges identified, & fulfill the three conditions of driving change, including: leveraging candidates’ Facebook profile to drive personalized motivation; customizable storytelling to engage candidates; & staying in touch with candidates at different stages of recruitment process. Integrated with customizable content & socially connected functionalities, an elegantly designed mobile recruitment app was delivered; it enabled recruiters to manage candidate pipeline, engage & convert target candidate on-the-go.

Drove Bancassurance Sales with Mobile FNA (Financial Need Analysis) App.

A leading insurance company looked for help in improving the performance of the bancassurance sales. Financial products could be complicated & overwhelming for consumers, who frequently feel uncertain about the kind of products they need.

In order to uncover the needs of consumers, sales agent ideally would like to gather a long list of personal information & preference of target prospects. This was not an easy task, given consumers might be reluctant or impatient to reveal such personal details.

The ARBA team worked closely with client managers to understand what prospect information was needed to facilitate the sales process, & identify ‘protection gap’ or ‘financial need’. We examined the context of these required information, both from sales & underwriting perspectives; we streamlined the existing questionnaire process. We designed an innovative ‘dial-centric’ interface that enabled sales agents to easily enter prospects’ personal information with using only one hand. We delivered a mobile FNA app that incorporated ‘ice-breaking’ features for sales agents to swiftly establish rapport with prospects. The app could also showcase interactive sales & marketing material to elaborate the client’s value proposition. It was well-received by the bancassurance sales; further enhancements were on the way to accelerate the sales performance & strengthen win-win relationship between our client & its bancassurance partners.

Direct Marketing Excellence through Responsive E-Newsletter Linked with CRM.

A leading financial services firm undergone rebrand & other significant organizational changes; it sought help in reconnecting with customers through digital services. The client did not have much experience or infrastructure to launch such digital initiatives, & had accumulated very limited customer insights from previous marketing communication activities.

The ARBA team worked closely with client managers to gain clear understanding of the challenges. We formulated an integrated electronic direct marketing (eDM), customer engagement & relationship management (CE&RM) initiative, which achieved several key goals: establishing a fundamental digital infrastructure for customer engagement; streamlining eDM process to save time; enhancing customer engagement & loyalty; managing eDM performance & uncovering actionable customer insights.

The digital services comprised of four core elements: responsive e-newsletter portal; e-newsletter generation & delivery solution; customer interaction tracking with management dashboard; & digital content strategy. It was delivered effectively to enable our client to achieve the goals, while building ongoing capabilities to sustain the success.

Improved Usability of Insurance Broker Portal with UX Assessment.

A global financial services group sought help in assessing the usability of a web portal & identifying areas for improvement. The portal was developed internally by the client. It aimed to enable the insurance brokers & independent financial advisors (IFAs) to conduct their business more productively. It also enabled the client managers to manage relationship with brokers & IFAs, & track their sales pipeline more effectively.

The ARBA team collaborated with client manager & devised key goals: assessing the user experience (UX) design of the portal; formulating proper user journeys of the portal; carrying out appropriate usability research to valid & improve the portal’s beta version; & delivering comprehensive recommendations on how to optimize the portal’s UX design.

A 2-step approach was formulated to fulfill our client’s goals. Step 1 was ‘expert review’ based on our UX specialists’ perspective; step 2 was ‘user experience interview’ that involved semi-structured interview & 1-on-1 discussion to uncover subtle issues on how pilot users interact with the portal. Our recommendations were formulated in an agile manner, in order to facilitate prompt enhancement of the portal prior to public launch. The portal was well received by the initial group of brokers & IFAs; additional groups of users were invited to utilize the portal & further sustain its success.

CONTACT US

We work across different financial services sectors, including: retail banking, wealth management, capital markets business, bancassurance, life insurance, & general insurance. We serve clients at different level & departments of their organization, in whatever capacity we can be most useful. On every case, we look at the business from a chief executive’s perspective, dig deep into the organizational context & competitive landscape to design & deliver the right digital solutions. For more information about how ARBA can help you, please contact us.

Talk To Us

(852) 3170 1230   info@arbaholdings.com

Visit Us

Unit K2, 9/F, MG Tower, 133 Hoi Bun Road, Kwun Tong, Hong Kong