The multi-channel customer experience saves the day

It is fair to say that RBS have garnered a great deal of negative press over the last few years including the recent executive bonus payments issue. This is not a topic for this forum but I would like to present a situation where the RBS multi-platform solution helped solve a problem and prevent undue stress to one of its customers, me.

A regular journey home started with a visit to the self-service ticket dispenser at the train station. Apart from the shock regarding the train ticket price hike this went off without a hitch, ticket duly purchased. Stage 2 was to withdraw money using my RBS card from an independent Cirrus affiliated ATM.

The ATM accepted my card, PIN and amount to be withdrawn. It then proceeded with the message ‘Please wait we are processing your request’. After a few minutes of waiting it was evident that the request was not going to be processed and my card was not coming back as the ATM had ‘frozen’.

The ATM model in question was one that I worked on in my previous role with NCR and is known for its reliability so this was a surprise. The less than friendly individual behind the counter informed me that ‘you will never see that card again as we don’t have authorisation to go into the machine to remove it’.

I thanked the on-site representative for their re-assuring words and once I caught the train I immediately contacted RBS Telephone Banking and informed them of the problem.

The following series of steps show multi-channel, multi-device customer service in action to alleviate my fears:

  • The card was immediately cancelled by the person I spoke to in the contact centre.
  • I checked the RBS iPhone and iPAD apps to see if the withdrawal had gone through despite the funds not being dispensed. Sadly it had.
  • RBS investigated the cash withdrawal and refunded the money within the hour.
  • Whilst en-route I checked the iPAD app and it showed £50 withdrawn and £50 refunded almost immediately.
  • RBS dispatched a new card the next day and I collected it in the post the day after.
  • Someone from RBS called to make sure I received the card and that I was happy with the service.
  • I replied with ‘Yes’.

The following timeline shows just how quickly this was turned around.

RBS AppAlong with the helpful RBS staff, the important point to this story was the provision of the mobile and tablet apps created by RBS.

Had these not been in place it would have been difficult to have a visual record of what occurred and provide the degree of confidence that things were ‘in hand’ whilst I was still on the move.

NB. It would have been possible to check digital banking via the main site login but as we know non-mobilised experiences using a mobile device are often problematic.

If I could use my mobile app to cancel the card or at least add a note to the account regarding the cash withdrawal issue then it may have further enhanced the experience.

However, even if such a function were available on either the mobile or tablet app, sometimes it is reassuring to speak to someone to know it is being addressed! A further improvement would be if the login procedure was the same across both the mobile and tablet applications.

The visual implementation is different and a single cross-platform login experience would help the aging mind.

This multi-platform holistic solution put in place by RBS was a good example of joined-up service design which stopped a potentially stressful situation escalating. By the time my train arrived back home the problem was resolved despite the patchy GPRS signal from the mobile operator.

Incidentally, RBS offered me ‘emergency funds’ to solve my immediate problem. The following day I walked into a branch, provided my account number and walked out with the sum I tried to take out the previous evening.

So despite the negative press, it’s not all bad for RBS.  They have systems in place that allowed me to have a good customer experience to recover from a stressful situation, all in the course of a single hour long train journey.

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