April 10, 2018 3.00PM / News
In an era of rapid transformation of financial services by technology through banking card services, mobile apps, text services, USSD, Point-of-sales (POS) and the Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), Nigerian banks are positioning for digital financial services for a global market space.
With increased financial transactions and activities across the globe, Nigerian banks have engaged the financial inclusion imperative by offering technology driven services that matches best practice; founded upon a customer service platform.
The recent experience of an online television platform with a leading banking group in Nigeria with whom it has over a decade old relationship; brings to the fore the challenges of seamless services in a tech era.
As an Online TV based company it wrote formally to the bank, to register its complaint over its card service failure at multiple levels. This failure led to the company losing the ownership of its site with the domain registration company - “Go Daddy”.
The company had applied six (6) weeks ago to the bank for an otherwise routine card renewal for its USD Domiciliary Account and was assured of a seamless change over when the card reaches its expiry date by month-end.
Two weeks to the expiry date, the account received an inflow/funded by the company and requested for a statement of account which never materialised.
In the last week before the expiration of the card, the company's routine payments for service providers were being declined; specifically from Aweber and Godaddy and the bank officials were informed about it. The bank officials assured the online company that once it receives its card, activation will occur 12-24hrs after, and the transactions will go.
Unfortunately, since last week when the company got the card, it was still unable to use it and a call was made to its account officer who advised on the need to write a formal letter to the bank.
Godaddy, after numerous attempts to renew the service and process due bills penalized the company for missing payment as at when due by moving it's domain to be auctioned (first time ever as the company never defaulted before now).
Subsequently, a payment of less than $20 now has to be bidded for starting from a floor of $400 via an auction simply because the bank failed to renew a card within a reasonable time (given that such is done outside the country currently).
This service delivery setback is inexplicable as the card / account is dedicated for online related transactions and never for local purposes or cash withdrawal.
An email was sent placed to the Card services unit of the bank, on the issue and the response was “Please be informed that your card is inactive and would remain so till you issue an instruction for us to activate it”.
It took a swift reaction from the leadership of the company, threatening to escalate the matter to the GCEO before the Card services unit resolved it.
This is not how seamless banking services are carried out, there must be a strong nexus between people, service and technology to drive effective financial services.