Mrs Comfort Owusu, the Executive Director of Association of Rural Banks (ARB), Ghana, has called on the banking institutions in the country to quickly institute an effective customer complain system to attend to customer’s complaints.
According to the Executive Director, because of the unavailability of these conduits, about 96% of disgruntled bank customers do not complain directly to their respective banks when they encounter a challenge during their banking transactions.
“This revelation is backed by empirical research by marketing experts that prove that dissatisfied customers do not complain directly to the institutions they deal with. In spite of banks’ conscious efforts to deliver superior quality services, there can be such service failure because of other uncontrollable factors. This development calls for effective customer complaint management.”Mrs Comfort Owusu
Mrs Comfort Owusu, therefore, called on rural banks to be proactive by putting in place customer feedback system to track customer complaints and not wait for customers to complain or think customers are satisfied and okay.
As a result of this development, Mrs Comfort Owusu recommended some customer feedback collection tools which include: conduction of customer satisfaction survey every quarter; CEOs and Branch managers must interact with customers to find out their latent problems; mystery shopping, among others.
Backing her claims on the need to prioritise customer complaints, she said “According to the Bank of Ghana report on customer complaint, a total number of 321 complaints were received from the banking public during the half year of 2021 and the corresponding past half year (2020) was 445.”
This development, Mrs Owusu said “when the banks disregard customer complaints, customers will seek redress from the regulator which might have a damaging effect on the banks’ reputation.”
Rural Banks to Pay Critical Attention to Customer Complaints
Mrs Owusu subsequently asked rural banks to pay crucial attention to customer complaints, indicating that there is the tendency for customers to engage in negative word of mouth communication by expressing their dissatisfaction to friends, relatives, among others.
“On a serious note, some will resort to the mass and social media to seek sympathizers and redress. Like a wild fire spreading, it will no doubt have serious negative impact on the individual Rural and Community Banks and by extension the industry as a whole. To avoid these negative consequences, we must prioritize consumer recourse mechanisms and resolution.”Mrs Comfort Owusu
The Executive Director of ARB added that when dissatisfied customers’ problems are disregarded, they will defect to their competitors, urging them to bear in mind that some dissatisfied customers don’t leave alone as they will persuade their friends to join them.
“The resultant effect is that our customer base and bottom-line will suffer. Therefore, as service providers, we must give serious attention to customer complaint resolution to drive customer satisfaction and retention.”Mrs Comfort Owusu
The Executive Director indicated that these proactive measures would help address customers’ complaints, thereby reducing customer dissatisfaction and defection.
Mrs Owusu urged CEOs to acquaint themselves with customer’s complaints to ensure speedy resolution, saying “As Directors and CEOs we have oversight responsibility over our banks and consequently, we will be accountable when complaints escalate to the Bank of Ghana or court.”