Commercial Bank of Dubai is a mid-sized bank based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE). Established in 1969 with 10 staff and one branch, it has evolved into 24 branches, all within UAE, employing 1,200 staff members and offers full range of services for corporate, commercial and consumer banking. The bank is a highly profitable institution, recording one of the highest Return on Assets in the industry, year after year. The Bank posted a net profit for the full year of 2008 of AED 771 million. Its’ total assets amounted to AED 36 billion at the end of 2008.

To enhance its strategic planning system Commercial Bank of Dubai (CBD) built an automated Integrated Performance Management system based on QPR’s performance management software. The Bank also obtained paperless and in cost-efficient manner ISO certificate with the help of QPR’s process management software.

In its quest to evolve and improve on all the aspects of management, the driver for deploying an Integrated Performance Management System came from the need to enhance the strategic planning system within the bank, at that time. These ranged from quantifying non financial objectives, delays in the manually intensive review process, lack of alignment between strategy, plans and initiatives and linking of reward to actual performance / output.

Performance management process automated in two months
In order to address the above, the Balanced Scorecard, which is a wholesome management tool, was implemented within Commercial Bank of Dubai. The strategy map, encapsulated the spirit of strategy accurately and precisely, and the balanced scorecard served as an effective communication and management tool.

A three tier planning system i.e. Organizational, Department, and Individual was envisaged and planned for.

It was also recognized that a system would be needed to effectively automate the manual processes in the performance management. QPR’s Partner in United Arab Emirates, IYCON, and QPR were chosen to partner with Commercial Bank of Dubai and work closely to bring this framework into reality.

The initial implementation of QPR within Commercial Bank of Dubai was carried out in August 2004, to automate the Balanced Scorecard. The project duration was two months, during which the Corporate scorecard and scorecards of 19 departments were automated and tracked on QPR.

In addition, scorecards of the 24 branches were deployed on a single branch template. Most measures on these scorecards were tracked either monthly or quarterly. The system enabled the bank to have measures that were lead as well lag, objectives that were financial and non financial, short term as well as long term. Based on a set of predefined criteria, the non financial objectives were also measured in quantifiable manner.

Swift implementation of the ISO 9001-2000
During the subsequent phase of deploying the Integrated Performance Management System, Commercial Bank of Dubai, implemented the ISO 9001-2000 in the year 2005, using QPR ProcessGuide as the vehicle for documenting its processes and quality system.

The bank received its ISO certification in January 2006, using the paperless technology. The use of QPR ProcessGuide has let to creation of a single Process repository for the bank. This enabled certification for ISO 9001-2000 in paperless mode and provided significant cost savings against deploying a paper based ISO system.

Corporate and individual scorecards linked easily
Building on its successes, Commercial Bank of Dubai extended its performance management framework during 2007, using QPR Scorecard, to the individual levels. This phase saw the deployment of over 1,200 individual scorecards, based on the roles of the employees as reflected in their job descriptions, which tracked the performance and also ranked the competencies of employees. Thus, the individual scorecard was clearly linked to the departmental/branches scorecards, ultimately ‘rolling up’ into the corporate [bank] scorecard.

Critical success factors in achieving an effective integrated performance management system, ranged from senior management support and buy in, allocating the right resources for the project, clarity of thinking and creativity, availability of data, as well as having the right partner in IYCON.

According to Masood Azhar, head of strategic planning, ‘the bank picked IYCON as their strategic partner since their approach was business driven and not technical oriented: “We have not been disappointed since we have received excellent ongoing support from the entire IYCON team, headed by Jude Chagas Pereira, when ever our people called on them for support and guidance on the usage of the QPR”.

More motivated employees, better management focus and lower costs
Benefits realized by the Commercial Bank of Dubai through the use of QPR ScoreCard is providing timely, precise and relevant information to the CEO for managing the managers, as a result of which the managers strive harder to better their performance, due to transparency in the performance reporting. In addition, quantifiable and objective reviews reflect an accurate state of affairs, which enables on-line tracking by senior managers though simple effective reporting.

Action plans, briefing booklets, and automated data collection enable managers to focus more on managing, rather than utilizing their resources in preparing reports.

The use of QPR ProcessGuide has also let to quantifiable benefits such as creating, a single Process repository for the bank, which has in turn, enabled certification for ISO 9001-2000, in paperless mode and significant cost savings against deploying a paper based ISO system. Some of the key benefits of the on-line system are: consistency and standardization in workflows across all the branches, quick and cost effective change management, online publishing of approved processes, low maintenance costs, enabling business impact analysis, easing the internal audit and compliance related work and much more.

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