Institutions need to become more customer-centric: many have been better at the rhetoric than the practice.
Product silos need to be broken down so customers can be served effectively at their first point of contact rather than handed off. This means sharing data across product lines and knitting together different IT systems.
Currently, customers often have to rebsubmit the same information for different services; greater IT integration would mean data could be retrieved in real time and customer behaviour better analysed for marketing purposes.
Such integration is also a cultural challenge: accepting that a customer's value may shift across the business and incentivising staff to share data for the organisation's overall good.
Equally, while most institutions recognise the importance of customer-facing staff for getting customers to spend money with them and not a competitor, they accept service can be deficient.
Rewarding performance on non-financial metrics such as customer satisfaction and loyalty should help; currently, financial metrics are more likely to be collected and assessed.
Winning the Battle for Growth: building the customer-centric financial institution PricewaterhouseCoopers/Economist Intelligence Unit, May 2006
Review by Steve Lodge