Three managers from a large ‘retail’ bank (the type of bank that you use) were discussing the…

Three managers from a large ‘retail’ bank (the type of bank that you use) were discussing the processes that they managed. They were managers of a call centre that dealt with customer enquiries, a manager running a voucher processing centre that scanned cheques, and a manager who dealt with ‘high net worth’ (rich) clients. This is what they said.

· Call centre manager – ‘My biggest issue is the inbound calls screen. That tells me the number of calls being handled by the operators and the number queueing. Monday morning just after 9 am the screen is going crazy, that’s when we are at our busiest. Sometimes during the night shift it’s a real surprise when the phone rings.

The next biggest issue is staff turnover as it takes usually four weeks to recruit and a similar time to train someone as we look to handle 15 basic banking enquiries from our customers and people need a fair amount of background knowledge.

· Voucher processing manager – ‘It’s really about keeping the cheque-encoding machines rolling. Cheques come to us by courier from branches in a wide geographical area and we process them through four large machines.

They start arriving around lunchtime and carry on until around 7 pm. Monday is our busiest day as shopkeepers deposit their weekend takings. Sometimes running up to Christmas it can be manic and we really struggle to get the work out before cut-off time. If a machine breaks down on the Monday before Christmas we are in real difficulties.’

· High net worth banking manager – ‘I guess flexibility is the key word. We have relatively few customers, but they are extremely wealthy and demanding. We never know what the next phone call will bring but we have to be able to deal with it because if we can’t we know someone else will. Sometimes it is a small query but the customer will ask for their regular point of contact, sometimes it is a really big issue and one of our account executives will have to get over to the customer’s workplace – or often their home – straightaway. It is the personal touch that really matters.

(a) Determine the similarities and differences between the three processes using the ‘4Vs’ approach.

(b) What do you think are the different skills and different approaches that will be needed to manage these three processes?

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