Strategy

The Group strategy Raiffeisen 2025 sets out the strategic direction for the period 2021–2025. Even in the first year of implementing the strategy, new solutions were launched.
The Group strategy Raiffeisen 2025 sets out the strategic direction for the period 2021–2025. The framework for what we do is defined by the vision "Raiffeisen – the innovative cooperative bank connects people". Raiffeisen delights people across Switzerland with unique solutions to connect them locally and digitally and jointly add value through sustainably embodied cooperative values.

Principles

With regard to implementing the strategy, Raiffeisen follows these principles:
  • Raiffeisen strives for a management culture focused on profit and efficiency, but not profit maximisation.
  • Raiffeisen is the bank that connects people. Raiffeisen appeals to all stakeholders with new technology, connects people based on embodied values and creates visible added value.
  • Raiffeisen generally positions itself as a smart follower in the change process. This poses much less business risk and brings along our broad client base on the change journey. Raiffeisen occasionally positions itself as a first mover, too.
  • Raiffeisen's strength lies in the Group and the Raiffeisen family. The cooperative model allows Raiffeisen to stand out from competitors as an innovative community of values and added value.
  • Raiffeisen is consistently evolving from a product supplier to a solutions provider and driving cost efficiency through scale, quality, standardisation and digital transformation.
  • One thing is always true for the Raiffeisen Group: security, stability, sustainability and high-quality growth come first.

Strategic objectives and targets

Metrics and targets have been set for six strategic objectives for the period 2021–2025, to review target achievement. The targets Raiffeisen would like to achieve by the end of the current strategy period will be reviewed on an ongoing basis over the coming years and adapted to the latest situation if necessary.
  • Raiffeisen aligns its physical and digital services with its customers’ needs. As a result of the changes in customer behaviour, the focus is on the interaction between digital channels and personal contacts. Digital self-service solutions will be expanded in addition to the existing offering of advice in person in the branch. In doing so, Raiffeisen aims to maintain and expand existing customer relationships and also attract new clients. Raiffeisen seeks to have more than 3.86 million clients by 2025. At the end of 2021, there were already 3.61 million people with a banking relationship with Raiffeisen.

  • Raiffeisen continues to evolve its business model to become a provider of solutions. It pursues this objective through cooperations, by further developing the ecosystem approach and by tapping into its potential for innovation. As a result, clients benefit from holistic solutions that provide them with added value. By 2025 Raiffeisen would like to increase the share of income that comes from commission business still further.

  • Simple, standardised and automated processes boost efficiency, improve cooperation within the Group and make new partnerships possible. Raiffeisen is driving ahead the standardisation of basic processes to boost efficiency and improve cooperation. It analyses opportunities for automating and digitalising processes and implements them one after the other. These optimising gains make it possible to optimise the Group’s cost structure, leaving staff with more time to provide advice to clients. The aim is to reach a cost/income ratio below 58% by the end of 2025. At the end of 2021, this figure was 56.0%.

  • Raiffeisen sets itself apart as a sustainable cooperative by maintaining customer proximity and cultivating cooperative values. Personal proximity to customers is in Raiffeisen’s DNA. The strong local physical presence is being systematically enhanced to include digital customer proximity. By 2025 Raiffeisen would like to increase the number of its cooperative members from the current 1.96 million to over 2 million.

  • Raiffeisen is developing into a learning organisation with a strong sense of responsibility. The modern working environment and attractive offerings for staff development make Raiffeisen a more desirable employer, strengthening its future potential and its capacity for innovation. This sense of responsibility demands a management culture able to react to the latest challenges and deal with risks and topical issues in a responsible way. By 2025 Raiffeisen aims to be at least number 25 in the employer ranking by Universum.com. This is a ranking of employers calculated and published every year by Universum Communications Switzerland AG, an employer branding company. In 2021 Raiffeisen ranked number 35.

  • Raiffeisen actively employs new technologies and data with a view to considerably improving the customer’s experience. New technologies are intended to make a major contribution to Raiffeisen solutions being easily available and intuitive to use. In line with this, Raiffeisen aims to expand its main banking relationships by the end of 2025. It wants to be the main bank for more than one-third of its private clients by that date. Having the position of main bank makes it possible to provide seamless advice on all matters and take a holistic view of clients’ financial situation.
The strategic ambitions for Raiffeisen up to the year 2025 are summarised below.

Implementation and target achievement in 2021

2021 saw the start of strategy implementation. The foundations for the strategic period 2021–2025 were established and the first new solutions for clients launched.
Some of the key initiatives taken in the year under review are listed below.

Supplier chosen for new customer experience portal

One of the strengths of Raiffeisen is physical customer proximity. Raiffeisen aims to transpose this to the digital world by expanding its self-service offerings. By the end of 2025, there will be a customer experience portal grouping all of Raiffeisen's digital services together. The banking group has entered into a cooperation with software company Backbase for the technical development of this portal. Over the next few years, the focus will be on technical implementation.

Multibanking for corporate clients

In September 2021 Raiffeisen introduced a multibanking platform with an accounting system for corporate clients. The Raiffeisen SME eServices platform allows companies to process their payments and manage liquidity (including in accounts with other banks) in the same application.

New solutions for (future) residential property owners

Diversifying income is a key strategic objective. In order to achieve this, there will be an increasing focus on holistic solutions rather than products. As the market leader in mortgages, Raiffeisen can tap into major potential in everything to do with housing in particular. The launch of the Liiva digital residential property platform, a joint venture between Raiffeisen and Mobiliar, in August 2021 marks a first step towards becoming a provider of more extensive solutions to do with housing. Liiva covers needs associated with buying, modernising and soon also selling private residential property. Spring 2021 saw the launch of the modernisation planner, an advisory tool for more comprehensive residential property advice. It can be used to show the investment required for modernisation, in terms of both energy use and other needs. Courses of action can be planned and other aspects, such as the subsidies that can be claimed, are also covered.

Expanding the range of offerings in investing and saving for retirement

When it comes to investing and saving for retirement, Raiffeisen wants to make it possible for everyone to sustainably build up capital. A first milestone was reached with the launch of the digital pillar 3a retirement savings solution in autumn 2021. This pillar was integrated directly into e-banking and can be used by all customers with no need for additional registration. At the end of November 2021, the transaction-related advisory mandate was also rolled out. The range of asset management mandates was also extended in 2021 to include an individual mandate where a personal investment strategy can be set. The Raiffeisen Rio asset management app had new functions added.

Foundations for business model transformation

Important foundations for Raiffeisen's future potential and its capacity for innovation were established in 2021. Internal regulations were streamlined and a vision for an optimised mortgage process for private clients produced. This will allow efficiency gains to be realised and costs cut over the next few years.
The shift towards being a learning organisation was accompanied by several initiatives during the year under review. These included further expansion of the digital workplace. Raiffeisen Switzerland provided methods for the new world of work. A shared cultural vision was also drafted in a participative process involving managers and employees of Raiffeisen Switzerland. These initiatives by Raiffeisen Switzerland won the Swiss HR Award 2021 in the Culture & Change category from specialist magazine "HR Today".

Programme governance

Raiffeisen Switzerland’s Board of Directors is responsible for the Group’s strategy. Owners’ committees are included so that Raiffeisen Switzerland and the Raiffeisen banks can exchange ideas and shape opinions.
 
Corporate Governance – Group structure
Raiffeisen is breaking new ground with its programme governance. It encourages thinking and working outside traditional organisational structures. Last year saw mixed interdisciplinary teams formed into streams to implement key strategic issues together across the organisation.
Agile methods of working were also piloted in 2021 as part of the strategy implementation. Implementing the Raiffeisen 2025 strategy yields results that are focused on values and clients while taking account of the rapidly changing environment.

Outlook: Priorities for strategy implementation in 2022

The aim is to drive the diversification of the business model ahead further in the current year. Another emphasis in 2022 will be on process improvements, creating more capacity for the Raiffeisen banks to provide advice. The introduction of a first beta version of the customer experience portal will also be a main aim.
The following focuses and initiatives will be prioritised in 2022:
  • Optimising the business model, with a focus on boosting efficiency: the future mortgage process, which was designed with the help of representatives from the Raiffeisen banks, will be tested within the Group in 2022 and is scheduled for final launch in 2023. In the investing and saving for retirement business, the process for customer advisors to open new products such as fund savings plans will be simplified.

  • Further developing the business model, with the emphasis on diversifying income: Raiffeisen will continue to expand the investing and saving for retirement business. To complement the pillar 3a retirement savings solution, Raiffeisen plans to launch index-tracking investment solutions in March 2022. There will also be additions to the mandate offering. The sustainability strategy will be implemented across the full range of products and services in investing and saving for retirement.

  • Digitalisation, with the focus on customer retention and self-service: 2022 will witness a major milestone with the launch of the first beta version of the customer experience portal app. This will then be further developed on an ongoing basis. In this connection, digital customer onboarding with a focus on mobile first is expected to be rolled out in the fourth quarter. The SME eServices multibanking solution for corporate clients will also be further optimised.

  • Encouraging Group transformation and enabling: The Raiffeisen Group will continue to encourage dialogue and an exchange of views between Raiffeisen Switzerland and the Raiffeisen banks to support the transformation. In addition, employees will be empowered to meet the future requirement profiles through ongoing training and initiatives.