Thursday, January 24, 2013

Inconsistent Customer Service

State Bank of India has taken an unique step in extending its working hours today, the 24th Jan, as three consecutive bank holidays follow from tomorrow. It is appreciable that the bank has taken steps to extend its services through its own way of extending the working hours.

What comes to the mind of a bank customer is, if SBI feels that its customers will be impacted by consecutive bank holidays, what is preventing the other banks also to follow suite?

If all the banks are bound by a central agency , why can't that agency think of applying this uniformly across all banks ? After all this practice is not new as on some 31st of March in many years, this has been done to facilitate the customers to pay their taxes.

By allowing individual banks to define such sops, the banks no doubt create a healthy competition amongst themselves. But on the other hand such needs, if genuine, are left at the mercy of individual banks. This is where , I feel the central agency has failed in keeping the banks together, as has been done hitherto.

In the current scenario of ATMs and Internet banking , I personally feel that this is not necessary as the customers could definitely continue to do their activities without visiting the banks. One also wonders as to whether the bank extended the same gesture last week when the banks closed for consecutive days around Pongal.

Such arbitrary decisions could also trigger displeasure from the bank staff, not all are likely to be compensated for the extended working on such days. Will the concerned authorities think about it?

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