Banks held back by "disconnected" communication channels

Poor data leads to bad customer experience

Poor data leads to bad customer experience

UK banks need to improve their relationships with their customers but are being held back by disconnected communications channels, fragmented customer data and inconsistent business processes.

High customer turnover and increasing competition are placing enormous pressure on large banks to rethink their business strategies, said Datamonitor customer relationship management analyst Peter Ryan.

Datamonitor sent mystery shoppers to enquire about bank products and services via web, email and phone to asses the customer service performance of retail banks.

But the analyst found that UK banks had trouble dealing with these requests.

Datamonitor said not one of the UK banks it approached attempted to cross-sell related banking products during the course of the customer interaction, and only 14 per cent managed to capture the customer’s basic contact information for identification or follow-up.

Only one in five banks attempted to understand the features the customer was interesting in before making product recommendations – and more than a quarter failed to respond at all.

"There is a lack of proactivity on the part of the banks. The results that came out might be the wakeup call that the financial services industry needs. There are definitely some areas of improvement that can be made in terms of customer experience," Ryan said.

Datamonitor's research, sponsored by Siebel and IBM, said retail banks need to start with a baseline assessment of business performance and then work towards creating a "customer-centric" organisation.