My job allows me to do something I really enjoy and find rewarding. I love the interaction with customers and colleagues alike.
Sometimes a customer now living in the UK but originally from Ireland wants to chat when they hear an Irish accent.
What particular skills do you bring to your workplace?
It helps to have some keyboard skills because most communication with the branches is by Call Logging.
You should be customer focused and like working on the telephone. You should also be polite and courteous and remain calm under pressure.
What are the main challenges?
Procedural changes can be introduced at any time so you have to keep up to date by reading all emails from Team Leaders and the 'Must Reads' which are circulated through the Bank's Intranet site.
Every call is a challenge because I try to give each customer excellent service so that their query is dealt with quickly and accurately, and that at the end of the call they feel valued.
What are the main tasks and responsibilities?
My key responsibilities include providing world-class quality service to all our customers whilst meeting specific targets which include Service Levels, Call Handling Time, Fulfilment, Adherence to Policies and Punctuality.
Describe a typical day?
I work on the Great Britain team and take calls from Personal and Business customers in the UK.
The Customer Service Desk is the first point of contact a customer has with their branch, so it is important to be warm and welcoming whilst remaining professional at all times.
It is also important to sound confident and that you know what you are talking about. If unable to resolve a query I either have to transfer the call to the branch, or if this is not appropriate, I record details of the query on a Call Log to the branch and tell the customer that the matter will be investigated and they will be called back. It is very important that the details in the log are accurate - especially the customers contact details.
We try to get through the calls as quickly as possible but at the same time we don't want the customer to feel rushed. We are always mindful of our targets, whilst providing superior customer service at all times.
How did you go about getting your current job?
I saw an ad in a local newspaper stating that Banking 365 were holding a Recruitment Open Day in a hotel in the area.
I bought a suit, went on the Internet to pick up some interview tips and borrowed library books on aptitude tests so I could practice.
I presented myself at 9.00am on the day in question - I was actually the first to arrive! I had to fill in a short questionnaire and then sit selection tests. I was glad I had practiced because it put me in the right frame of mind to complete the tests.
We waited whilst the tests were checked and successful applicants then had to sit an interview with two managers from Banking 365. It was a general interview where they went through my CV in terms of my education and work experience to date.
Later that day I received a telephone call to say I had come through the interview stage and would have a telephone interview the next day. This was really daunting.
I went on the Internet again and picked up some tips on telephone interviews. The interview lasted about 20 minutes - you really had to have your wits about you and literally think on your feet so as not to have too much dead air.
Later that week I received a phone call offering me the position - I was delighted!
What's not so cool?
It can be frustrating at times not being able to see a query through to resolution and having to rely on someone else to investigate.
Sometimes if a customer phones about the service, they just want to get something off their chest. I try to be calm, empathise with them and escalate their query through the appropriate channels in order to resolve it as quickly as possible.