Banking sector woes mount

HARARE - Zimbabwe's financial sector — which has been faring well in recent years — recorded a decrease in customer satisfaction in the period from October 2015 to September 2016, on the back of cash uncertainties.

Service Excellence Awards adjudication committee chairperson, Darlick Marandure, last week said the financial services sector had recorded a marked decrease in customer gratification in the period under review following the country’s prevailing cash crisis.

Marandure highlighted that in its research for this years’ Service Excellence Awards winners, the adjudication team had conducted research on local brands from October 2015 to September 2016.

“Generally, the hospitality sector still remains at the top in terms of customer satisfaction rating with 81 percent.

“Notable decrease was recorded in the banking sector with 44 percent from 64 percent and local authorities with 35 percent from 42 percent,” he said.

The country is currently battling a cash shortage situation, which has seen depositors queuing overnight for their hard-earned cash with banks setting maximum withdrawal limits of as low as $50 in some instances contributing to customer scepticism and dissatisfaction.

In its half-year report, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe pointed out that between June 2016 and the corresponding period last year, hard cash balances declined by 37 percent from $546,3 million to $343 million.

This comes as equities firm, IH Securities, recently warned that Zimbabwe’s financial sector was facing an uncertain future on the back of doubts in market around central bank-issued Treasury Bills (TB).

According to the excellence services survey findings, product and services quality with 24 percent, was the main driving factor in customer purchase decisions followed by staff attitude and speed of service and price being the fourth with 15 percent.

During the study, physical questionnaires were distributed in Bulawayo, Harare, Chitungwiza, Mutare, Gweru, Victoria Falls, Kwekwe, Marondera, Chinhoyi, Masvingo and Kariba.

The targeted feedback was 12 500 questionnaires and the actual response rate was 78,33 percent.

Meanwhile, Barclays Bank Zimbabwe walked away with the Service Excellence Banking Sector Award as CBZ was named first runner-up while Steward Bank walked away with the second runner-up gong.

In the hospitality sector, Meikles Hotel was named the best service excellence company followed by Victoria Falls Hotel and Rainbow Towers Hotel.

Wireless solutions provider, ZOL Limited, was crowned ISP IAP company of the year as TelOne and Utande were named first and second runners-up respectively.

In the mobile and telecommunications sector, Telecel Zimbabwe was named best service excellence brand as Econet and NetOne came in first and second.

State-owned fixed network operator, TelOne, was crowned best service excellence public sector company followed by NetOne and the Department of Immigration Services.

In the local authorities category, the City of Bulawayo walked away with the excellence services gong as First Mutual Medical Aid was crowned best health insurance company.

Comments (2)

Very few banks, probably 3 (SCB, Stanbic, Barclays) still have excellent customer service. The rest don't care any more. Issues vary from delayed salary credits, delayed RTGS transfers, changes to card limits without notifying cardholders etc Let them sink on their own.

Sagitarr - 2 November 2016

CBZ - with ownership of approximately USD 800 million of Treasury Bills is today hopelessly insolvent. Reason why is that the RBOZ cannot repay the USD to pay back the depositors. Good bye to CBZ and get your cash out of this bank ASAP comrades

nelson moyo - 8 November 2016

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