Chase now requires bankers to drag customers waiting for a teller out of line so they can upsell other bank products. One longtime banker wrote in to apologize for the practice, which “blatantly exploits a customer’s trust,” and to encourage customers to call Chase and tell them that they hate it, too. Read the banker’s full heartfelt note, after the jump.
Our tipster writes:
I have run into a bit of a problem with my employer, Chase, and I was hoping that your readers can help me out. I loved my job at Washington Mutual, and I still like my job despite the flak the industry gets in general, because after almost a decade I have a strong customer base that knows and trusts me. I also can do quite a bit to help people avoid fees and make the best financial decisions. These things, plus coworkers that share the same philosophy, are the reasons that I am still working in retail banking.
Chase, however, seems to have decided to erode more of what little trust that consumers have left. They (understandably) would like all of the new account reps to have someone at their desks at all times. They do this by having the banker walk up to someone in line, ask them what brings them in, and then tell them that they of course can help them with that and leads them to their desk. Here’s the thing: the banker doesn’t actually have a cash drawer or the ability to post transactions. While the customer is sitting at the desk, the banker will send someone else up to the teller line to post the transaction.
This process takes a lot more time than if the customer had just seen an actual teller. While the customer is now hostage at the banker’s desk, the banker suggests that they do a quick review of the customer’s information, to make sure that everything is up to date. This of course leads to product recommendations – in other words, a bait and switch to get the customer in front of a person that has been hard wired to sell, sell, sell.
I’m running out of excuses to avoid doing this myself. It’s become such a large part of my job that if I protest too much I risk losing my job. If this has ever happened to you in a branch, or even if it hasn’t but the very idea of it makes you as angry as it does me, PLEASE let Chase know. Trust me, the bankers hate this as much as the customers, and would love to see it go. It won’t because it does increase sales in a branch, which is why the branches are feeling such pressure. But it blatantly exploits a customer’s trust and I’m sick of it.
It’s not enough to tell the folks in the branch because we’ve been hearing so much about the banking industry in general that we honestly start to tune it out. But you can ask that we submit feedback (the link is right there on our homepage) so that it will be routed to the right people. If the banker won’t do it or doesn’t know how, ask for a manager or anyone else. Insist that your complaint be heard beyond the branch. If you are an employee go out of your way to help customers register their dissatisfaction. But, please, be nice to your local bankers when you do this! We didn’t put this policy into place.
You can also call or e-mail or write the “Chase Executive Office”:
P.O. Box 19020
Houston, Tx 77224
Thank you for reading!
– A banker that actually wants to help you (there are many more of us than you think)