Will BBVA Become the Most Collaborative Bank in the World via the...

Will BBVA Become the Most Collaborative Bank in the World via the Cloud?

In his first guest post, William Trout explains why in his opinion the BBVA Banking Group leads the way in internal collaboration and social business following his move to the cloud via an industry first partnership with Google.

I am thrilled to present you with William Trout– Director of Product and Segment Development at BBVA Compass ‘ second guest post on the Visible Banking blog.
This is another insightful piece on the topic of internal collaboration in banking in nowadays’ open and social world.

I invite you to read William’s first guest post from January 2012, ‘BBVA Compass Champions Employee-Driven Communications in Banking‘.Please find below William’s take on the recent major joint announcement from Google and BBVA about the move of the global banking group to the cloud.BBVA Bets on the Cloud to Drive Internal Collaboration
Bank employees want information on-demand and via mobile and user-friendly platforms. The BBVA Group is moving to the cloud as part of its strategy for improving collaboration and communication internally.Recently the Spanish banking multinational BBVA Group announced its decision to engage Google Apps for Business  as its primary communication and collaboration tool for more than 100,000 employees worldwide. The deal, the largest of its kind, marks a milestone for the banking industry, both from a business standpoint and in terms of the roadmap it offers for managing the complex regulatory and information security issues around a move to the cloud.

From a business standpoint, the adoption of Google’s Gmail, Calendar, Docs, Groups, Site and Video tools signals a shift in terms of how employees work together. Combined with the launch of an internal social networking platform, the adoption of Google’s corporate online applications will allow employees to share and create content globally with a click of the mouse. As BBVA Chief Information Officer José Ollala  said in a recent press release, “Integrating the Google Apps for Business suite with our own tools will allow us to introduce a new way of working.  Employees will have access to the information they need, no matter where they are.”

Before the agreement with Google, BBVA had already taken steps to embed mobility into its internal communications. For example, the Group’s 2000 top managers worldwide use iPads  to access digital and other content on-the-go. The iPads even include special apps that allow the managers to access company news, broadcasts and even highlights from the BBVA-sponsored Spanish first division soccer league.

The U.S. unit of BBVA has made particular efforts over the years to encourage mobility and free up the flow of information internally. As Director of Product and Segment Development (formerly Director of Internal Communications) William Trout  explains, BBVA Compass was constrained by a ‘desktop’ or Intranet-driven approach to sharing information internally, an approach that poorly served the needs of employees. “Hardware and network bandwidth shortfalls have constrained access to video in the branches,” said Trout.

To get around this bottleneck, BBVA Compass’ Internal Communications team created an externally hosted and mobile-optimized video platform called digital exchange, which gives employees the ability to access dynamic content from outside the network, including via smartphones and tablets.

BBVA Compass plans as a next step to launch a Flickr-style audio and video sharing platform. Called Mosaic, this mobile-enabled platform “will allow employees to share and comment on issues related to the corporate brand and culture in a way that is relevant to them,” said Trout.

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As Director of Product and Segment Development for the Wealth Management unit of BBVA Compass, a top 20 U.S. bank, William is responsible for the creation of strategic business development plans to grow emerging and existing markets in coordination with the BBVA Group’s Global Private Banking unit. A graduate of Harvard University, William began his financial services career in 1999. William is the founder of the Houston Financial Services Communicators Group, a network of industry marketing and communications leaders, and his professional interests range from technology and innovation to leadership and stakeholder engagement.

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