Wednesday, May 25, 2011


This is a follow up to my earlier post ( about my experience with the ING Bank.
The last time there was a person who was mistakenly ‘authorized’ for my mother’s account. So, we had to send in a form to have that person removed.

Yesterday I did go to the bank and I was in for a big surprise....... I was no longer authorized myself. Mistakenly they had removed me as well!
The person at this local branche had no explanation for this. The only suggestion was to restart up the whole authorization process from the beginning. Needless to say that I also couldn’t perform the transaction that I was supposed to do.

This is really an incredible experience. They can add and remove people who are authorized to your account, without your consent! I do think that trust is a very important cornerstone of the financial system. I told them that my trust was damaged and they totally understood. But they said that they could do nothing about it.

The message of empowering your employees to help customers wasn’t being heard in the ING HQ. Also there were no quality processes in place to check the actions.

I did ask whether I could use social media to complain about this, but the answer was ‘no’. I did find out that there was only one account (@ING_news) which they only use to broadcast their news. Clearly they had decided not to use social media to listen to customers.
Then I said that I wanted to file a formal complaint. The only way to do this was via the system, which the CSR used. So, he had to type in the complaint.

I would say that there is a structural disrespect for customers as well as for their own employees. Their employees were totally not empowered to satisfy customers or to help solve any issues. Everything is centralized and set up in a ‘broadcast’ only mode. ‘If we make it difficult to complain, customers will not complain.’ It looks like they have missed the profound market shift and that they are still living in the Stone Age. That attitude makes it very difficult to survive.

The only companies who will thrive are companies who are happy to help customers and who empower their employees to act accordingly.

Are you convinced that only happy employees can create happy customers?


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