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Reference no. SMU-12-0008
Published by:
Singapore Management University (2012)
Revision date:
6 pages
Data source:
Field research


On 6 April 2011, Paul Cobban, head of process improvement at Singapore-based DBS Bank saw an opportunity to improve the bank's business operations and how it served its customers. One area in particular, the loan-origination process, was cumbersome and often cited as a source of excessive customer wait time. Loan-origination started when a customer applied for a loan and ended with the application being rejected or funds being dispersed to the client. The current process was complex, involved several hand-offs between departments, and was slowed by the inefficiencies created by the separation of functions that is common in most large organizations. The case begins with Cobban preparing to advocate changes at a process improvement workshop focusing on loan origination that involves managers from various departments of the bank. He has already faced the setback that recommendations from a workshop the year before were not followed through with. At present, Cobban must identify changes that will produce technological and operational benefits, and also find a way to convince all relevant stakeholders to do their part to implement the changes successfully.


Banking; Singapore; Service excellence; Information technology (IT); Change management
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